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2010 April | Who's Your Daddy? | giggle Blogs

Archive: April 2010

April 29, 2010

On The Road Again…

No matter if you’re a working parent or stay at home parent or somewhere in between, there will come a time where you need to hit the road.  Be it for business, pleasure or some combination, it is great to get away, but also sometime excruciating to leave little ones behind.  With Who’s Your Mommy on the road this week, it got me to thinking about how we try to keep it together when one of us is on the road.  Here are a few things we do in our house to make travel easier on everyone:

  1. Web Video – with webcams in every laptop it is even easier to stay in touch while you’re on the road.  Web video is an easy way to say hi face to face from anywhere in the world.  For little ones, you can play peek-a-boo and old kids can share their days, projects, stories, etc.  Skype (www.skype.com) has been a major tool in our house for all travel (and staying in touch everyday with extended family).  See some video chatting basics from the Wall Street Journal at With Video Chatting, It’s a Small World After All
  2. Local Photos – Your iPhone or Blackberry has a camera in it, so use it.  Take a photo of yourself in the city you are visiting and email it back to your kids.  It is a great way for them to feel connected to you while you’re gone. 
  3. Local Weather – Ask older kids to check your local weather each day.  When you talk on the phone, let them tell you your weather.  It is a great geography lesson and also keeps them connected to you. 
  4. Gift Ritual – Frequent travelers can make it a regular part of coming home to bring a small gift that relates to the city or country you visited.  Try to keep it small and if you’re always rushing, perhaps even something you can get at the airport.  Landmark souvenirs, keychains, dolls or local snacks all work great. 
  5. Direct Flights – It seems obvious, but sometimes a direct flight that is a few dollars more will save you a ton of headaches and time from missed connections, weather delays and disappointed kids. 

Happy travels, but get home soon.  Your kids miss you.

April 28, 2010

Take Help – Stay Sane

"Wanna Party?"

 Having a baby enter your family is one of the greatest joys I have known. We talk all the time about how we can’t even remember life before the Little Man. Then five years goes by and you think to yourself, “When was the last time we went out?” Before kids, the concept of “Date Night” was completely foreign because every night was date night.  Before kids, you and Lionel Richie partied “All Night Long” right? 

Well those times may be over, but as parents, you can’t lose your identity as the couple who started the whole thing. Hold on too tight and you will squeeze the fun out of parenthood. If you are lucky enough to have family and friends willing to help out occasionally to give you some “me” time or “us” time, I strongly suggest you take it.

Your family or friends may not do it exactly as you do. They may give an occasional treat or let bedtime slip by a few minutes, but your child will survive. We all did. Look at it as broadening your kids’ horizons while keeping yours from shrinking to the size of a nursery.

April 22, 2010

Common Sense (From Phineas & Ferb via My Seven Year Old)

So Who’s Your Daddy had big plans for you in this next post.  I had visions of a hilarious viral internet video speeding around the globe.  I’ll spare you the dirty details but the high level was that I planned to make a parody video of “Pants On The Ground” from American Idol fame.  I enlisted the Little Man to help me film my masterpiece and once he understood what I was planning, this conversation ensued:

 “Dad, are you sure want to do this?” he says.

 “What do you mean?  This is going to be hilarious!” I answered.

 “Ok, but remember, once you put it on the internet, it stays there forever.”

 [Dramatic Pause]

 “Where did you learn that?” I curiously asked hoping he would reply that it was my sage advice coming back to me in some cosmic boomerang.

 “Phineas and Ferb taught me that” came the deadpan reply.

 And there it was.  Irrefutable evidence that cartoons may have occasionally redeeming value beyond mom and dad getting a few precious minutes of extra sleep.  Consider my world rocked.  See the PSA here to find out about Internet Safety for kids from Phineas and Ferb.  And this is what it has come to, getting common sense reality checks from my seven year old.

 The video project remains on hold…

April 14, 2010

Get Out! (Outside That Is)

Last week I was talking about sunscreen and warm weather morning routines (read it here).  You can tell by the theme of my posts that is that time of year where those of us living in cold weather states start to emerge from our houses and apartments rubbing our eyes like a grizzly coming out of its cave after a long winter of hibernation.  It is so great to feel the sun on our faces (with sunscreen on of course).  My love of spring intersected with an article I read in the Wall Street Journal this morning about Pushing Kids to Play Outside

 The article sounded a bit like Who’s Your Daddy in lamenting how kids just don’t play outside like they used to in the “old days.”  Parents are of course battling safety concerns that our parents were confronted with.  Add to that video games, cell phones, tv, internet, iPods and the list goes on.  There are so many distractions inside it’s hard to get this iGeneration outside. 

 As parents, we need to make sure our kids don’t miss out on the adventures that wait out the back door.  I have such fond memories of exploring my own backyard and even as I got a bit older, exploring trails around our house.  I sure hope I can convey this sense of love and wonderment with the outdoors to the Little Man.  Some suggestions (some from Pushing Kids to Play Outside):

  • If both parents work, encourage your babysitter/nanny to get the kids outside
  • To help alleviate safety concerns, share supervision of kids outside with neighbors
  • Choose day care that makes outdoor play a priority
  • Occasionally skip the gym in favor of a walk with your kids
  • Encourage kids to help with outdoor projects and yard work
  • Make up games or challenges for outside like counting animals in your yard

It’s a bit ironic to think that we expect our kids to be green and save the planet from behind a computer screen.  Get them outside for everyone’s sake, but mostly theirs.

April 8, 2010

Sunscreen Or Else!

 Now that the warm weather has arrived in New York, I’d have thought our morning “get ready for school routine” would be much simplified.  No more getting on coats, hats mittens, boots and trudging through snow and freezing rain to get to school.  Sounds logical, but I’m wrong again!

 The last few days of blissful sunshine have reminded me of the warm weather morning scramble.  Now I’m trying to drag the Little Man into the bathroom to not only brush those teeth (most of which still need to fall out – go figure), but we need to get sunscreen applied and find an agreeable hat.  Sounds easy enough, right?  Wrong. 

"We're going to need more sunscreen!"

 Anyone who has ever applied sunscreen to a child knows that you’d have an easier time wrestling alligators than trying to get a kid properly lathered up.  It’s like the perfect storm of parenting.  You’ve got no gold at the end of the rainbow like the beach, water park or pool to justify the sunscreen, you’ve got a tighter timeframe to get to school than Jack Bauer trying to save humanity and you’ve got a unwilling participant who’d rather be playing Lego Star Wars with those precious morning minutes. Tick tock.

Parents, please remember to take the time to get that sunscreen on your kids.  They’ll thank you in thirty years when the dermatologist isn’t explaining what carcinoma is to them.   Fortunately for me, the Little Man has come to accept that there is no escaping dad with a Supergoop Quickstick.  Jack Bauer has nothing on me…