Fatherly Stuff: March 2012

Mar 28, 2012

Top 3 FREE Favorite Smartphone Apps for Toddlers (for iPhone and Android)

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Question: What is the fastest selling product in the infant/toddler demographic?

A) Television & Movies

B) Books

C) Smartphone Apps



If you chose A or B, then you clearly didn’t read the title of this blog post. There are literally millions of apps being sold on a regular basis, many of which are currently targeting the hearts and minds of our youngest inhabitants.


There has been somewhat of a controversy on whether kids actually learn from these apps, which you can read about here, or here. With your own research, you can make your own informed decision, but I make it no secret as to which side of the fence I stand:


Most anything in this world can be harmful, if used in excess. That philosophy can also apply to the usage of smartphone apps:


Is it okay to have your child use a fun/educational app within earshot of you while you fix dinner or get some cleaning done? Maybe.

Is it okay to turn your phone into super nanny while you run to the store real quick to buy cigarettes? Eh…probably not.

 It’s also a great way to avert potential meltdowns by keeping them responsibly preoccupied while you are driving, buying groceries, or waiting for a table at a local restaurant and those cheesy activity worksheets with the little crayons just don’t cut it.

 What I look for when searching for apps  are both educational value yet at the same time, is engaging enough to keep my child interested for more than five minutes. The other component that I believe is important as well is the cost . A lot of the time, you do get what you pay for. But I’m here to say that there are a few that exist where you can get quality at a great price (aka free).
Here are a few of our favorite apps that can be downloaded from iPhone and Android and won’t cost you a thing:

  1. Zoodles (Kid Mode)
    This app is probably the most versatile of the bunch. Once you create an account for your child, the app is programmed to engineer a virtual conveyor belt of activities tailored to their age. These activities include YouTube sing along videos, interactive games, finger painting, storybooks and the list goes on. Another cool feature is the video storybook. I can take a video of myself or another family memeber reading one of the books listed from my son to play whenever he wants. He loves it because he can navigate though the options with ease. I love it because I can give him my phone with the comfort that it comes with a child safety lock, so he won’t be able to contact Japan and run up my cell phone bill. I also like that the app comes with a Parent Dashboard that allows me to monitor and filter the content that is fed.

    The free version gives your child a large amount of content to explore, but there you can also purchase the premium package, which makes even more options available, for a reasonable $3.99 a month. Here's a YouTube video of the app in action.

  2.   Toddler Teasers(Shapes)

    The Toddler Teasers Shapes App is a learning tool that has figured out a simple, yet unique and effective way to teach your child a wide variety of shapes. As the parent, you can control the difficulty of shapes your toddler will encounter (2-D vs 3-D). They accomplish this through three basic menu options. The first is a kind of multiple-choice mode where your child has to connect the pictures of shapes with the questions being asked. Once they complete the round, they are rewarded with their choice of stickers.  My son enjoys being able to build and look at his sticker collection. Also, If the parent is interest, this app also allows them to track their child’s progress.

    The second mode works like basic flashcards that your child can go over either by themselves or with an adult or even a friend.  The third mode is called “Toy Box”. It is a random set of  3-4 games that center around shapes. All of this costs you nothing.

    This is where they get you through:  While the shapes category is free, the developers also have a variety of other subjects, ranging from letters, to animals, to even transportation that you can purchase at your leisure for $0.99 for 4 categories.
  3. iStoryBooks

    For a FREE app, it really doesn’t get much better than this. With a library of over 25 story books ranging from the familiar (Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood, The Little Red Hen) to lesser known tales from countries like Gambia and Iceland, the iStoryBook app is littered with modest yet colorful artwork on each that is enjoyable to both the child as well as the parent.  The main narrator for the stories (Mya) is engaging and has a pleasant voice to listen to.  Some of the stories can also be downloaded in Spanish as well. What’s also useful is the auto-read option, which allows you to simply sit back and enjoy the story.  Here is a YouTube link of one of their stories.






Honerable Mentions

The following are also great free apps that didnt make the top 3 cut, but are still worth checking out:

  • Kids Piano Lite-A great way to nurture a love of music in your child. This app allows you to play free hand or with the notes automatically highlighted to make it easy learn the songs on their playlist. The piano key sounds are also customizable. While the full version does provide some extras, the free version is still a stand alone awesome product. Here's  a YouTube link if you want to see it in action.
  • Kids Finger Painting Art Game- This app provides you with tons of pictures to paint. It also has different paint brush settings which adds to the experience. The paid version comes ad free.
  • The Laurie Bernker Band Mobile App- I talked about this app in a previous post: You can access their database and listen to most of their songs and music videos. There is also an option to view info regarding tours and other cool updates.

Question: What other apps do your children enjoy? Is cost a major factor for you?


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Mar 22, 2012

Lessons From a Sick Child

I'll set the scene:

It was 3am and my sleep was disturbed by a vaguely familiar sound that is coming from my son's bedroom. Still half asleep, I groggily walk down the hallway to his bedroom to make sure he's okay.

My poor little guy was hunched over a bucket, dry heaving while his mother is rubbing his back and consoling him.

Apparently this was going on since midnight but somehow I missed it and was just waking up (Father fail, face palm). We later discovered there was a pandemic spreading at his daycare (thanks guys for the heads up) that eventually claimed my son as a victim. I discussed how kids passing on germs to one another was one of the cons associated with daycare in an earlier article.

Considering he was hurling his little brains out for most of the night, he was such a trooper. As I was getting ready for work (mom stayed home), I asked him how he was doing.

He replies enthusiastically, "I have a bucket that I can puke in and I go 'hurrrrr!' in it."

I don't know about you, but I've had a couple of stomach bugs and my attitude could be described as less than thrilled. Okay, I'm usually a big baby. It just goes to show the the resiliancy of children. It's a quality that I admire and we should all try to emulate when faced with tough situations.

Unfortunately, his day eventually lead us to the emergency room where he was given something to help the vomiting (followed by an awesome Monsters Inc sticker and a popsicle). However, he still  isn't 100%, so it'll be my turn to be home with the little guy and take care of him. Hopefully, he'll be well enough for us to get out of the house so we can enjoy the beautiful weather. Either way, I have a feeling he'll be okay.

Chillaxing under a bunch of blankets watching Elmo

I'm looking for suggestions! What types of activities to you do with your child when they are home sick? Arts and crafts? Movie marathon? Comment with your ideas below!




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Mar 19, 2012

Addressing A Common Fatherhood Fear (Part 3): Will I Ever Have A Social Life Again?

(This is the third part of a series that addresses common fears that new fathers typically encounter)

Part 1

Part 2

About a few days after I discovered that I was going to be a dad, I did what most guys who find themselves at a crossroad in life often do: I headed to a bar.

I should probably explain: When I told my best buddies the news, I think that they were about as shocked as I was.  They then decided the best thing for me to do was to talk about it over a few beers. As we sat there, each with a Corona in hand discussing what the hell I was going to do next, one of them half-joking said something along the lines of, "Whelp, enjoy that beer, since that'll be the last one you'll have for a while".

I kind of just shrugged in agreement, because that's basically what my, -and I imagine most people’s-, perception of fatherhood is: Trendy clothes are traded in for loose-fitting, puke and drool stained khakis. Weekends that used to consist of random, impromptu trips to wherever, will be replaced by daily feeding and sleep schedules. After all, everyone knows that once you become a dad, you can kiss your social life goodbye... right?

The epitome of cool
Well honestly, that's not too far from the truth. Once you become a father, your entire mindset changes and your priorities will almost instantly shift from whatever they were before, to what's best for the baby. Because of that, it is really easy to lose touch with life you used to revel in during what I call the "B.C." era (Before Child) and that includes your friends. This was especially true in my case; due to my younger age, most of my friends were and still are childless and as a result, I found it increasingly difficult to stay connected with them.  There are a couple of reasons for this:
  1.   The more time we spent figuring out how to be parents, not only were we too preoccupied to consider going out for drinks much; we were often flat out too tired to even think about doing anything but sleep whenever we were able to find a sliver of free time (which wasn't often).
       2.      As a parent, you'll appreciate the need for structure for you and your family. So, when you get a last minute text at 9pm     telling you that everyone is getting together at the bar in 30 minutes, more than likely, you won’t be able to make it. That also goes for spontaneous dates with your lady as well. Even random visits from your friends that never bothered you in the past will be unwelcome; especially if that visit causes the baby to wake up. This can result in friction and feelings of neglect from your friend's point of view.


Technically, I guess you dont have to kiss your social life "goodbye"; you’re just going to have to hold it by the hand and let it know that they just aren’t the priority anymore. Make sure you tell it that it’s you, not them that’s the problem.

Please know however, that while you will definitely have to make some life adjustments, you don't have to completely give up your social life. With a little hard work and open communication, you can still be an awesome dad, all while maintaining friendships and enjoying something resembling a social life. I've listed some steps below that I've learned that worked for me:


· Scheduling. Learn it. Love it
One of the simplest and most useful tools that I use to keep my social life on track is a calendar. It’s pretty straight forward:  by putting the effort to map out future events, it will make it easier to be there for your friends’ special occasions and you have that special alone time with your significant other. For best results, try to stay ahead of the curve by doing your planning as early as possible.



  •  Be Open Minded
This may be hard to accept, but the inevitable lifestyle change is too difficult for some friends to endure and as a result, you’ll probably lose a few.  That’s okay because you are also going to make new ones.  With that being said however, a good friendship is still a two-way street and effort on your end is still required in order for it to stay strong, baby or not.

  •  Be available
Every once in a while your lady may get invited to a girl’s night out. Unfortunately, this may occur on the same day you had that really crazy day at work and all you wanted to do was come home and take some time to yourself. Despite this, it will be in your best interest to be as supportive as possible and allow her to have a guilt free night out.  

  • Be quiet
This part is more difficult than it sounds. When you do make it out with your friends, of course you’re expected to talk a little bit about your baby, however don’t overdo it- as interesting as it is to you, most people won’t be as enthralled with the story of how  your child’s poop changed multiple colors today. Actually, it’s kind of a buzz kill. As they say on Jersey Shore, you don’t want to be “that guy”.




Question: Do you find it a challenge to balance your family and social life? If so, what ways do you manage them?



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1.     

Mar 16, 2012

Hilarious Video of Dads Changing Diapers

In honor of the recent Huggies Controversy, I thought I would post the following hilarious video of dads changing their child's diaper (or attempting to anyway).

While funny, these video clips were obviously taken some time ago and is not an accurate representation of the modern father, who can change a diaper (no matter how great the smell), without batting an eye. Actually, the video would likely be more related to a dad's first few experiences; We don't become experts overnight. It does take a little practice. I remember accidentally putting on my son's diaper backwards at least a couple of times when I was first learning, which got a few laughs.

The "most interesting" moment of that first week would have to be the time when I was changing him and his eyes suddenly grew wide and bugged. Next thing I know, I was introduced to a wonderful talent of babies that no one ever tells you about: Projectile Poop. I swear it must have flew a least 2 feet across the room.


Reenactment of what I imagine was probably going on in his colon
After the initial shock wore off, all we could do was laugh. I have a feeling this information was intentionally withheld by our parents, as some sort of "new parent's club" initiation.

 In any case, I'll stop rambling and let you Enjoy the video. Happy Friday!



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Mar 13, 2012

Presidential Fathers and Sons (A Repost and Reflection)

The following is a very interesting article I came across in the Wall Street Journal by writer Michael Medved. He analyzes the top presidential candidates over the past seven elections and points out how each of their lives have been inexplicably shaped by the legacy (or lack thereof), of their father.
Rick Santorum was noticeably left out of this article, possibly because at the time this article was written (2/06/2012), he was not considered a serious contender, which goes to show you how quickly the tides can change. Or it may be the fact this is relationship with his father was seemingly average by American standards.

In any case, it is a strong reminder of the life long affect that our actions, no matter now small, as fathers have on our children.

Presidential Fathers and Sons

For the seventh consecutive election, the next president will either be a privileged son or a man with no relationship with his biological father.


Voters this year look set to continue an odd pattern that's prevailed in presidential politics for a quarter century. They will elect either a candidate with a famous father or with no father.

The surviving serious contenders—Barack Obama, Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney—all exemplify one of these two categories. For the seventh consecutive election, the winning candidate will be either a privileged prince with an adored, powerful patriarch, or an up-from-nothing scrapper with no relationship with his biological dad.
Mitt Romney is a classic example of a candidate with a famous father. George Romney achieved distinction as an auto-company executive, three-term governor of Michigan, serious presidential candidate, and secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
Newt Gingrich, on the other hand, enjoyed no meaningful connection with his birth father. Newton Leroy McPherson was an abusive, hard-drinking auto mechanic who abandoned his 17-year-old wife within days of young Newt's birth. The boy later took the last name of his stepfather, Bob Gingrich, a career army officer who moved his family around the world with the demands of his service.

The young Bill Clinton experienced related challenges: His father, hard-drinking traveling salesman William Jefferson Blythe Jr., fatally crashed his car three months before the future president's birth. The boy later endured the drinking and battering of Roger Clinton, second of his mother's four husbands.

Barack Obama fits snugly into the no-father tradition: Barack Sr. separated from his teenage wife and infant son before the boy's first birthday, eventually returning to Kenya where he succumbed to chronic alcoholism at age 46.



Republican presidential candidates, Newt Gingrich, left, listens to
Mitt Romney at a Republican presidential candidates debate in Jacksonville, Fla

Curiously, this means that if Mr. Gingrich becomes president, three of the last five chief executives of the United States will have grown up with minimal or no contact with their alcoholic, self-destructive birth fathers. And if Mr. Romney wins, three of the last five presidents will have emerged from the shadow of charismatic, widely admired political leaders.







The latter category obviously includes George W. Bush, who still worships his father, the war hero and president, who in turn profoundly admires his father, Prescott Bush—the 6-foot 4-inch World War I artillery captain, Wall Street titan and two-term U.S. senator from Connecticut.

Other would-be presidents of recent years similarly struggled to live up to legacies of famous fathers. Al Gore grew up in Washington, D.C., as the progeny of three-term U.S. Sen. Albert Sr., while John McCain spent his early life trying to replicate the heroics of his father and grandfather, both celebrated four-star admirals in the Navy.

No recent presidents can boast paternity that seems ordinary or normal, finding middle ground between the intense expectations of a powerful, prominent parent and the disasters of badly broken families with absent birth fathers.
In one sense, these extreme backgrounds now dominate the presidential process because that process itself has become so extreme. A rising politico can no longer wait for colleagues to push or pull him toward a White House race, or dream of sudden success at some brokered convention. A serious candidacy currently requires obsessive pursuit of power over the course of several years, with expenditure of tens of millions in campaign cash.
What sort of person willingly undergoes such an ordeal? More and more, it seems, either a privileged individual with a profound sense of entitlement, or an unlikely upstart whose status as miraculous survivor amounts to his own anointing. But despite a shared sense of determination and destiny, famous-father candidates tend to run dramatically different campaigns than do their no-father counterparts.

Sons of famous fathers work tirelessly to burnish family traditions and complete the unfinished business of prior generations. George W. Bush focused on winning the second term cruelly denied to his father, and Mitt Romney still hopes to claim the Republican nomination that his father lost to Richard Nixon in 1968.

The article has been shortened. Please click here to read the full article.

Mar 12, 2012

Awesome Fathers in the Animal Kingdom that Will Put you to Shame

The fatherhood role in our society has shifted dramatically over the years. In my grandfather's time, men typically had a virtually non-existent part in child care during the first few years of life.
For example: My grandfather would tell me that back then, how it was common for men to sit in a separate waiting room while their wife went into labor and that the idea of a man changing diapers was virtually unheard of. Now compare that to my experience, where I was there for every step of my son's birth, from labor pains to cutting the umbilical cord. Not to mention, I've changed so many dirty diapers that my wife and I would play "rock, paper, scissors" to see who would change the next one. This is now considered the norm.
I am not saying all of this to brag; I'm using this example to highlight the stark difference of what it means to be a father today versus the historical model and I am proud to be apart of the upward trend.

 What is shocking to me is while this increased hands-on approach to fatherhood is more or less just starting to come around, there are examples in the animal kingdom of truly dedicated, nurturing dads that have been ahead of the curve and for hundreds of years.

You would be amazed at the many examples, but I’m going to list the top 5 that I found the most interesting. Perhaps we can all look towards these creatures and learn from them:



1. Emperor Penguins


Anyone that has seen the movie, " Happy Feet" knows how devoted these fathers are. As largest known species of Penguin, they are exclusively found in Antarctica. If that wasn't bad enough, their mating season of choice is winter, which can reach temperatures as low as -35 degrees Fahrenheit When the female penguin lays their egg, the dad takes over all parental duties and keeps it warm by balancing the egg on his feet, which can take up to 9 weeks, until the baby hatches. This is truly an admirable feat, considering they stay in one place the entire time, while withstanding bitter temperatures and eating nothing, all for the sake for their chick.










2.  Seahorse


What makes the daddy seahorse so unique and kinda weird is the fact that they take on a role that's typically reserved for females in every other species on the planet. When two seahorses, er, procreate, the female connects itself to the male and inserts her eggs into his pouch , effectively impregnating the male (sexy much?). He then carries his brood (which can be up to as many as 1,500 babies), for up to 10 weeks, depending on the species. The world hasn't seen anything this amazing since the movie, Junior.


3.   Red Fox





      The most distinguishing characteristic of the male Red Fox is the amount attention they give to their cubs. When the cubs are first born, they spend the first month feeding from their mother, who is unable to leave the den at all during this time. The male fox provides food for her every 4-6 hours until she is able to hunt on her own. Once the cubs are old enough, the dad plays with them constantly and teaches them useful skills like how to hunt and forage for food, until they can fend for themselves.

Here's a  cool YouTube clip of a father and son cub in action:






4.   Catfish

The Catfish may be one of the most unlikely animals on this list, but these guys show one of the most extensive displays of paternal care in the fish world. The father keeps about 48 marble size eggs in his mouth, a process called mouth brooding. This can last for up to 60 days and the entire time, he refuses to eat, opting for starvation rather than accidentally eating an egg. If that isn’t dedication, I don’t know what is.









5. GiantWater Bugs

These insects may not be the prettiest in the world, but in the eyes of a Water Bug dad, they must be beautiful. He personifies the term, "carrying the family on his shoulders". Once the male and female mate, she glues the eggs (up to 150) to the male's back. From that point on, the responsibility of the children rest solely on dad. It carries the eggs around for about three weeks, protecting them from predators and parasites. He also strokes the eggs regularly to keep them clean. He will go through this process about three times per mating season. If you ever spot one of these guys, you'll want to make sure you keep a safe distance: their bite injects a paralyzing toxin that is considered one of the most painful in the insect world. When it comes to his eggs, this dad will protect them at all costs.


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Mar 8, 2012

Hilarious Baby Sleep Positions

As a blogger, one of my favorite activities is to, well, read other blogs. One of my favorite is called How To Be A Dad. They're speciality is showing the lighter, funnier side of fatherhood by creating a variety of skits, comics and stories. One of the best posts was about baby sleeping positions. It's too funny not to share.

We taught our son early to sleep in his bassinet and later his crib. But occasionally, he would spend a couple of nights with us in our bed. We made sure it never becasme a habit, but I understand there are some parents who are okay with it. God have mercy on your souls.

 Usually it would end up like the pictures below. If you're a parent, you should be able to relate to at least 80% of these pictures.

Happy Friday!










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Mar 6, 2012

Music for Kids that Won't Drive you Insane

It happens almost every morning when I'm driving the little guy to daycare. I'm listening to my morning radio show, being a good adult and catching up on my current events, until I'm suddenly interrupted.

"Daddy?"

"Yeah buddy, what's up", I nervously ask, knowing what's coming next.

"Daddy, I wanna hear Elmo"

I try to misdirect, "How about you play with your Alphabet Apple"

But he stubbornly requests, "Please let me listen to Elmo!"

I eventually yield and pop in the CD and I'm forced to subject myself to Elmo's high pitched voice as he sings about ducks, rainbows and lollipops. Now, don't get wrong: I don't necessarily hate Elmo or really any kind of kiddie music. The music is clean, the lyrics are simple and  usually educational  and most kids can't get enough. The problem for me is, between his favorite TV shows, DVDs and CDs, after a while, it gets to be a little mind numbing.



Poor bastard listened to too much Barney



Luckily for us, there are musicians out there who understand the parent's plight and have answered our call to create music that's clean and kids love, yet at the same time can be enjoyed by adults. It's cool because while I do have him listen to some of my favorite music from time to time, I didn't want to give up on his genre all together. Here are a few suggestions that helped us find middle ground:


1. The Aquabats



The Aquabats is a band based out of California who specialize in Rock n' Roll music for kids. From their superhero costumes, to their fun lyrics to awesome guitar play and cool names like Eagle "Bones" Falconhawk, these guys are sure to get both the kids and their parents on thier feet rocking out. I've been a fan since I saw them perform on Yo Gabba Gabba (another show with great music). They now have their own show on the HUB channel, and I highly encourage you to check it out.


 
 2. The Laurie Berkner Band



My son and I were first introduced to Ms. Berkner through a Nick Jr show called "Jack's Big Music Show". She and her band would regularly perform in music videos on the show that were very entertaining. Ever since, we've been hooked. Laurie, with her high energy, bubbly voice, leads with an acoustic guitar and is backed up by electric bass, electric guitar and a variety of other instruments, depending on the song. Their music very catchy and the lyrics are fun and easy for my toddler to sing along with. Any Laurie Berkner CD is a must have for your music collection.

I also recommend that if you're a smartphone user, to pick up the LBB Mobile App. Available for Android and iPhone, you can access their database and listen to most of their songs. There is also an option to view info regarding tours and other cool updates.



 
3. Secret Agent 23 Skidoo


I'm a fan of hip hop. Unfortunately, most of what's currently out on the market isn't fit for young children.  Luckily, there are artist out there like Secret Agent 23 Skidoo. Originally earning his hip hip stripes by touring with legends such as Run DMC and Mos Def, Skidoo began creating music geared specifically towards children, earning the moniker, "King of Kid-Hop". What I especially like isn't just that fact the he is a legitimate rapper, but the music is both fun to dance to and the lyrics simultaneously promote a number of positive messages. Case in point:





4. Lullaby CD by Jewel


Our family does alot of traveling between our in-laws who live on average 3-4 hours in opposite directions from our hometown. Mix that with a toddler who gets ansty after about 25 minutes in the car and your setting yourself up for a long drive. A very long drive. The soothing voice and melodic guitar play from Jewel's Lullaby album sets a tone of relaxation for our drives. We seriously don't leave the house on long trips without it.





So there you have it folks, those are my family's favorites. But as always, there are many other options for every individual family dynamic. With that being said, I'd like to hear from you: What types of music does your child like to listen to? Do you as a parent enjoy the music as well?


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Mar 5, 2012

Addressing A Common Fatherhood Fear (Part 2), Do I have what it akes to be a good father?

(Note: This is part 2 of a series addressing common fatherhood fears and ways to manage)

Check out Part 1 and Part 3

I spoke about the day I found out I was having my son in the first part of this series, and my initial feelings of anxiety. Part of this fear stemmed from the fact that I was in my early twenties and with the exception of my little sister (who is 12 years my junior), I really had no experience with babies.  Considering all of that my thought process at the time was, how in the heck was I supposed to be a good enough  father to my future child? Similar to this guy:


First and foremost, the fact that you care enough that you’re worried about whether you will be a good dad is a great thing.  It means that you already possess the special quality that every respectable dad has: The ability to look beyond yourself for the sake of someone else.  With that being said, the following are things that helped me overcome this fear and may benefit you as well.

1. Educate Yourself
As the saying goes, we fear what we don’t understand. Most guys have no idea how the whole pregnancy thing works, and that mystery is what makes it so scary (or at least that’s how it was for me).  What you can do to get rid of some of that uncertainty is education.  Check out your local library or bookstore and pick up some pregnancy books.  One of the most popular (and most helpful, in my opinion) is the book, “What to expect when you’re expecting”. It is a comprehensive guide of what goes on in a pregnant woman’s body from week 1 to week 40. Going through these types of books will help you better understand the whys, how's and WTFs of the entire process, which will better prepare you for what’s to come.

 Another tool that helped me through the gestation period is the “Laugh and Learn” DVD. It’s basically a virtual childbirth class that you can take whenever your schedule allows. I found it very helpful, hilariously informative and the things I learned from that DVD absolutely helped me be a stronger support system for April when she went into labor.

By using these materials to help understand what you will be facing, you can effectively unveil that proverbial, “man behind the curtain”, and better prepare you to take that next step into fatherhood.

2. Find a support group or speak with an experienced parent

For those who can, I suggest you try to get in touch with a friend or family member you know that has a child. By doing this, you can get valuable inside information on what it's like raising kids. Ask them questions about what they did to prepare and how they are currently managing.  Also if possible, take the time to interact with their children, especially if they are still and infant or toddler. There is nothing like hands on practice to get you comfortable with the idea of having a baby of your own.

For those who don't have the benefit of friends or family with children, getting together with a support group is a great way to learn about parenthood. Like the saying goes, there is strength in numbers. Typically the members of such groups consist of dads who pool their resources in order to help each other by providing information based on their individual experiences as well as solutions to the challenges they faced. Here is a link to the Global Father Support Group. I encourage everyone to check out the list and reach out the a group near your area.
If there isn't a group in your area, why not start one of your own? Having experience isn't necessarily a requirement. Even if you're in a group of new dads who know nothing about child rearing, talking to each other about what you're going through will do nothing but help


Question: Have you ever felt like you weren't good enough to be a dad? What did you do to overcome that fear?


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Mar 2, 2012

Happy Birthday Dr Seuss!

I love Dr Seuss. His books made reading fun for me as a kid, which has since developed into a lifelong interest. Now as a father, I think it's special that I get to share those same stories with my child. Thank you, Dr Seuss for that gift.

Here's an link with some interesting facts about Dr Seuss

What were your favorite Dr Seuss books growing up? Which one does your child like the best?
As a kid, mine was always "One Fish, Two Fish" and my son's is "There's a Wocket in My Pocket"
Happy Reading!