Sunday Share 17

Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend thus far. We’ve nearly completed a science fair project. That’ll warrant a post of it’s own. Perhaps I’ll get Crash to do a video on it. It’s due Tuesday and all we have left to do is the title and make sure he knows the material so he can explain it to his teacher, class, and perhaps judges.

I’m doing something a bit different this week. I find in the blogging world the women far outnumber the men. This week it’s all about us gentlemen. Sorry ladies. I’ve been reading a bunch of daddy blogs and blogs written by men. Today I share them with you.

Adequate Dad
Well hello, boys! I’ve only been reading AD for a short while, but he has two boys like my own. That makes us kindred spirits.

Ah Dad
He makes a regular appearance here, so here’s his follow up fish story.

Coach Daddy
Another regular to The Share, he was the inspiration to my Go Ask Your Father series. He still does it better and this post proves it.

First Time Dad
His baby “Rabini” has finally arrived! Wait till you see her.

Opinionated Man
Or Harsh Reality. Or Jason Cushman. Or J.C. He’s the one who teaches all how to share because when we all share we all win.

Dream Big, Dream Often
Another sharing, caring gentlemen. Here he gives us his bucket list. Otherwise, he’s creating Meet and Greets and reblogging!

Jason Greene (One Good Dad)
Shhh… it’s the “V” word, guys. A good who writes with good humor.

The Return of the Modern Philosopher
Another I have just recently discovered. I don’t know if he’s a dad or not, but he makes laugh. Here he writes about  Trump firing the Pope.
Lastly, if you haven’t visited my brother’s cancer Fundraiser page yet. Please do so. You’ll find an inspirational story about 10 month old Melina who battled retinoblastoma.

Lastly, if you have visited my brother’s cancer Fundraiser page yet. Please do so. You’ll find an inspirational story about 10 month old Melina who battled retinoblastoma.

Also, lastly, if you’re looking for a new place to share yours and others posts head over to my Pinterest board “Board of Blogs”. If you click to follow I’ll invite you to contribute. You can pin your own stuff and posts others have written that you feel others should read, too.

superdad

Confessions of a Dad

I read a post titled “Mommy Confessions” over at No Page Left Blank. She read it from She Didn’t Come With Instructions. I thought I’d borrow (steal?) the idea for myself today.

These “confessions” basically entail all that is adventurous in parenting. They are what we do to get by. Maybe we’re not proud of them, but it’s what works for us. Sometimes they’re funny. Sometimes they make others raise their eyebrows and think “OMG! Really?” But mostly they are to give a give a glimmer of hope to other parents, letting them know the struggle is real and they’re not alone.

The Claw
I’ve written all about this complex lie we tell Bang. It keeps him from whining wherever we go.

We lay with Bang until he falls asleep. We used to do this with Crash, too. Now, with Crash (the 8 year old) we only lay with him for a few minutes or so after lights out. Then he puts himself to sleep. However, with Bang (the 4 year old) he hugs his penguin and will often hold our hand or arm until he drifts off into slumberland. He’s going through a couple transitions at the moment. Kindergarten three days a week and a new babysitter. Once he’s settled into routine we’ll probably start get him to put himself to sleep. He’s done it before, but we never stuck to it. That’s our quiet time together. Same with Crash. We still lay with our kids at bedtime because it’s our peaceful time together. And we like to hang on to their childhood with both hands good and tight.
We change clothes in front of the kids.  We use the bathroom together. The kids see us naked and we’re okay with that. Though, I am more self conscience about it than DW. One day after DW got out of the shower, Bang was laying in our bed watching TV. DW went in to get dressed and Bang told her, “Mom, you have cute boobies”.
We try to get the kids to do chores but it often feels like a losing battle. I would like to come up with some regular chores for them to do. Every day kind of chores. Then start allowing them earn a small allowance. My DW’s sister-in-law gives their children chores to do and at the end of the week they can earn up to $3. One dollar is for them to spend, one is for them to save and one is for them to use toward buying something for someone else (i.e. birthday present). Right now mine just do chores when I think of them or when they need to be done.

We probably eat out more frequently than we should. But sometimes, we just don’t feel like cooking. Sometimes it’s just easier.

I sneak junk food yet I make the kids eat healthy. If they ask for a cookie, I make them have a piece of fruit first, if they haven’t already. And while they’re off eating their piece of fruit I eat a cookie. Sometimes, I’ll pass on dessert right after supper so that I can eat it after they are in bed and I won’t have to share with them.

When the kids do something mean to each other I sing the chorus to Dennis Leary’s “I’m an Asshole” under my breath.

I hate feeling like a restaurant but sometime I’ll cater to Bang just to get him to eat. If it turns out he doesn’t like (replace “like” with “want”) what we’re having I’ll get him something different. Most of the time I just reheat a leftover. Once, however, I made him a banana pancake just so he would eat supper.

When the kids were infants I liked it when DW pumped because that meant I could feed the baby.

Speaking of pumping, breast milk tastes sweet. (Am I the only dad who knows this? Or just the only one willing to admit it?) I may have tasted a small amount. Don’t be surprised. I also tasted cat food.

I yell. Not often, mind you and I’m not proud of it. But I do. It usually follows 3-100 times of already having said what it was they weren’t listening. Stay off the road. No horseplay on the trampoline. Stop splashing in the bathtub. Don’t be mean to your brother. Clean up your Legos.

You know those freezers in grocery stores where they keep the bags of ice? I may or may not have a picture of Crash standing in one looking out the glass door. Much like Oh did in Disney’s “Home”. (Don’t worry, Crash wasn’t locked in like Oh was. Though some days it’s tempting).

I know I’m a good/fun/sometimes goofy dad, but Mom is the real brains behind our family machine. I like to think I can handle it all on my own and DW usually lets me think I can. That’s why we make a great team.

More more more

checkFor the past two weeks I’ve been participating in a free blogging course through WordPress – Blogging 201. It has been spectacularly helpful. My blog has received a makeover, branched out and made many, many connections with other bloggers. Also, it has helped me increase my traffic. While I’m not famous with thousands of followers, I do have few faithful followers. To those who have chosen to “follow” me, I thank you, thank you, thank you.

Today, I would like to know what you, my loyal or my my first timers, what you enjoy about my blog. It’s a very short survey of four question. If the survey takes you more than a minute to complete, you were thinking too hard.

Home Alone (sort of) (for a little while)

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RacetrackFinally! Everyone is nearly back to good heath. Crash and Bang were down with fevers the past 7-10 days. Crash missed 5 days of school, effectively gaining him an extra week of Christmas vacation. So now it’s just me and Bang at home during the day. Today we played racetrack (see photo at left). We modified the track a little later so Bang could race some marbles down it instead. We also played trucks. We played A LOT of trucks. Cement trucks. Dump trucks. Garbage trucks. An Excavator. His favorite is the garbage truck. No one touches the garbage truck and no gets hurt. I wish Crash would learn this lesson. Crash likes to play with said garbage truck when Bang isn’t looking. Then Bang looks and all hell breaks loose. Crash tries to pull the “But I had it first” routine. So I make Bang ask for it nicely. Once this occurs Crash has to return the truck to its owner, albeit reluctantly.

Anyway, we delivered Crash to the bus stop and saw him off then played in the snow. More specifically, we played on the big ice patch in the backyard. Slipping and sliding and spinning. We did it again after Crash got home from school. The weather had warmed to +2 Celsius and it was raining a bit so the snow was perfect for snowballs. Many got thrown. Bang knocked on the door. Mom opened the door to see what it was that he wanted and she found herself being pelted by his snowball. His laughter was contagious. We’re getting more snow tonight and I can’t wait.

KnufflebunnyThe rest of the day was pretty boring… Took Crash and Bang with me to get a new headlight and wipers for the car and stopped by the library to exchange some books. We found one of our favorites… Knuffle Bunny by Mo Willems. It was one of the first books Crash learned to read. If you haven’t read it, I highly suggest it. I guarantee you’ll want to read Knuffle Bunny, Too and Knuffle Bunny Free. Crash and Bang are now silently asleep and I’m headed there myself… night night folks.

Daddy and Running

I’m a runner. I love it. Whether I go for 4 mile “short” run or a 14 mile “long” run, I love it. So I guess it was inevitable that running would eventually make an appearance on my dad blog. I started running for the sake of running (instead of running to get in shape for another sport, i.e. soccer or wrestling) about six years ago.  A friend of mine, who had always refused to go running with me in university, asked me if I wanted to run a six hour relay race with him. That was my first competition – a little over a year after our first son was born. I’ve pretty much been running since.

Of course, on all my runs I’m thinking. Sometimes it’s about the weather. Sometimes it’s about my training plan. It’s often about food. Occasionally, it’s about the family.  So exactly how is running is like being a dad?

You get out of it what you put into it. 
The old garbage in garbage theory doesn’t exactly apply to running. There are no garbage miles. A mile is a mile and still trumps sitting on your butt. However, if you don’t train properly, don’t eat properly or don’t drink properly you might as well stay home. Just like the kids you have to spend time with, if you don’t utilize your time properly who knows what kind of monster you can create! In running I mix it up. Sometimes run slow, sometimes I run fast. Sometimes I run slow then run fast then run slow again. But that’s just so I can say I ran a fartlek. And bonus! It has the word fart in it! No, farts are not funny. They’re hilarious! Sorry, back on track. I mix up my running routines to keep it interesting and to make myself a better runner. I mix up the things I do as a dad for the same reasons- to keep things interesting and make myself a better dad. Sometime we play educational games. Sometimes we play our own made up games. Sometimes we play a new sport or find a new way to practice handwriting or addition. Sometimes it’s a new intervention to stop the sibling rivalry. Sometimes I go and hide and eat chocolate chips right out of the bag.

It’s about the journey, not the destination
How many years has Usain Bolt spent training for a race that’s over in less than ten seconds? I’m no Usain but I still spend FAR more time training than I do racing. My goal this year is run 1,000 miles. If I’m lucky 19 of those miles will be races (a half marathon-13.1 miles and local 10k). So I’m on a journey to get into the shape I want to be in to run the races I’d like to run. Being a dad is about that same journey. A journey of discovery, wonder, frustration… Except for traveling. When traveling with kids it’s ALWAYS about the destination. Often, the sooner you get there the better chance the kids have of surviving the trip.

It makes you feel good/proud.
An overwhelming feeling of pride swells inside me when I hear my 3 year old count to 15 without skipping 7 and rearranging a few other numbers. I feel the same pride hearing my 2nd grader read 4th grade books. I feel the same pride when I log a 7:07 minute mile pace for a 10k run. The 3 year old has ALOT of numbers left learn and the 2nd grader has ALOT harder books to learn to read and I still have ALOT of seconds to knock off my min/mile pace. But the pride and joy keeps me motivated enough (usually) to keep at. None of the above happens over night. But like I just said, it’s about the journey.

It can be done in groups or alone.
There’s no better way to get fun things to teach your kids like talking to other dads. There are different methods that result in the outcomes. There are as many kinds runners as there are kinds of dads. Each is their own individual. Some runners go slow and some go fast. Some runners only run on trails and some only run the roads. Some runners run really far and some runners don’t. Some dads are workaholics. Some dads stay home. Some dads are really creative and some are really handy and some are loud and some are quiet. No matter how you run or whatever reason you run, you reap the benefits of running. No matter what kind of dad you are you are still raising future’s adults. Keep on running. Keep on dadding.