One night recently at the dinner table, my wife said to me, “You know you’re the reason why the boys are the way they are.” While I might have hoped this was general praise for their overall wonderfulness, I think what she was referring to specifically was their petty competitiveness. As is often the case, our 4- and 6-year-old sons were enjoying their dinner with a side of brotherly bickering. School had recently started for both, and they were arguing over who had received more points from their teacher that day. Our older son’s first-grade teacher uses an app to help parents track … [Read more...]
Earlier this summer, my kids and I embarked on a 600-mile road trip without my wife. Many people thought I was crazy, including, most notably, my wife. As is almost always the case, she was right.
The drive from our home in Florida to North Carolina was a grind and the fact that we had to turn around and do it all over again in just a few days was downright brutal. The in-between part while we were on what some might call a "vacation" wasn’t exactly a walk in the park either, although … [Read more...]
An acrobat known as Red Panda has been a staple of basketball halftime shows across the country for more than 20 years. I once saw her in person at an NBA game years before I had children. I was stunned by her simple in concept, yet seemingly impossible in practice, act. In short, she rides a very tall unicycle, places an increasing numbers of bowls onto her foot and leg, flips the bowls into the air, and catches them in a stack on her head. She never stops peddling her unicycle and she rarely ever drops a bowl. Her performances are mesmerizing. But because I was a single, child-free … [Read more...]
I’m always looking for fun activities to do with the kids after school and on weekends. It can be difficult, though, because it’s hard to come up with things a 1-, 3-, and 6-year-old will all enjoy. My wife was out of town for a few days recently and, suddenly, the need for fun (time-killing) activities felt even more urgent. Don’t get me wrong. I’ve been a stay-at-home father for more than six years so I’m as equipped as anyone to solo parent for a few days, but really, no one is suitably equipped for this. To make matters worse, my 6-year-old has gotten really interested in Minecraft … [Read more...]
She clings to the green monkey bar on our backyard play set with her little fingers. The nail on her right index finger is an angry purple-blue. The scar from a lost battle with the small iron trap door in the ground by our mailbox that conceals our water meter, which is as endlessly fascinating to a 1-year-old as it is hazardous to appendages. I stand below the bars, my hands resting on her hips. She presses the souls of her pink and black sneakers against my chest, smiles her heart-melting smile, and giggles as she pushes herself up. Her waist at bar level, leaning forward to peak over … [Read more...]