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How To Spot An Experienced Dad

We’ve all spotted the new first-time Dad before. Pale-faced, nervously clutching his newborn infant’s carseat like the slightest stumble or trip might end in disaster. All Dads start out that way.

Add some time and a few more kids, and Dad becomes a pro.

Experienced Dad

DisclaimerThis review was made possible by iConnect Influencer Management, and Pampers was compensated for my participation in this campaign, but all opinions are 100% mine.

Here are 10 ways to spot an experienced Dad:

He carries a newborn like a football, not a crystal vase.

First time Dads hold their newborns like they may break on them at any moment. The experienced Dad is confident in his baby juggling skills and thinks nothing of tucking the newborn in one arm while using his free hand to get a coffee for Mom. Everybody wins!

He can walk around carrying all his children at once.

experienced Dad

No child left behind! When one kid gets a piggy back, all of them have to pile on Dad. Who is he to deny access to one? Even if you’re 70 pounds, he’s an unstoppable Dad so HOP ON.

He knows how to make diaper changes fun.

Standing diaper change, floor diaper change, or car diaper change… the experienced Dad has done it all.

When his squirmy tot turns into an octopus at diaper changing time, he knows how to distract them into submission so he can get the dirty work done.

He’s also learned that using Pampers is a must! Their Extra Absorb Channels mean that baby can sleep for up 12 hours at night and stay protected from wetness. He isn’t fooled into thinking a bigger, bulkier diaper makes a better diaper!

He’s not ashamed to play princess.

experienced Dad

Girl Dads unite! An experienced Dad does whatever it takes to bond with his kids, and if that means becoming a princess, that’s exactly what he’s gonna do.

He knows when to give Mom a break.

The veteran Dad recognizes the look on Mom’s face when she’s hit her breaking point. That’s when he steps in and offers to take the kids for a hike and out for ice cream. It doesn’t need to be Mother’s Day for Mom to get herself a pedicure and an hour of silence to herself.

He can single handedly organize a baseball game when all players have no idea how to play baseball.

experienced Dad

What’s harder than herding cats? Trying to get a group of distracted tikes to play a pickup game of baseball. In a small yard. When none of them have any idea how to play.

Let’s just hope Dad stays at the pitcher’s mound. Otherwise this venture will likely end with a broken window.

He can turn himself into playground equipment.

Who needs the gym when you have a gaggle of kids happy to help you with your ab workout? The pro Dad can turn himself into all kinds of playground equipment. Here is ours as the human see-saw:

Dad’s shoulder makes the perfect napping place when you’re out and about. And his arms don’t get as tired as Moms so the little one can get their full nap time in.

He has a superhuman sense of when his little one’s in danger.

I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve seen Dad jump up out of nowhere and catch one of our kids that I didn’t even realize was falling. It’s some kind of Dad-sense that puts cat reflexes to shame.

via GIPHY

 

Dads are amazing!

Here’s wishing a Happy Father’s Day to all the Dads out there, both new and old. Your presence makes a world of difference in the lives of your children.

Want to make Dad feel special with a homemade card from the kiddos? Check out these adorable free printable Father’s Day Cards!

Experienced Dads

Share! What’s something amazing the Dad in your life can do?

 

Our fall in crappy cell phone pics

It’s been way too long since I captioned our crappy cell phone pics. The pics from September and October are still just as crappy as ever 😀 A lot of these are from my Halloween Disney trip with Tiana.

 

funny kid pics

The first day of school at our house

 

funny kid picsLuca channels his inner Taylor Swift: “Look what you made me do.”

 

funny kid pics

My daughter’s response when I asked her if I was her best friend.

 

funny kid pics

I’m not sure what Z was trying to write, but now I feel scared and keep checking for buobe crapps.

 

That face your kid gives you when you’ve told him there’s no more cookies and he catches you in a lie.

 

funny kid pics

Text from the husband while I’m away: “Are they allowed to be doing this ?”

 

funny kid pics

Zari misheard the photographer saying “smile” as “make sure to completely hide your upper lip.”

 

funny kid pics

Why did no one tell me that a $5 fidget spinner would delight and entertain my child for 2.5 hours? I would have sprung for the 50 pack.

 

funny kid pics

Why does this precious photo of Grandpa and Luca remind me of the start of an America’s Funniest Home Video clip?

 

File this one under “things parents let their kids do in the 80s that can get CPS called on you now”.

 

We never promote violence in our household. Except for that one toy where you get to make your favorite superheroes punch each other in the face until they fall over.

If you like finding glitter in your omelette 12 days after the fact, this face paint is for you.

 

I warned the kids this would happen if they woke up in the middle of the night one more time.

 

When your kid gets this happy about mixing candy it’s kind of like you could have skipped the trip to Disney and just taken them to that sketchy local movie theater.

 

When your mom brings you on a ride you absolutely hate and then forces you to pose for a picture in front of it.

 

 Thank you Disney for making the most Instagram-able beverage I’ve ever encountered.

 

Apparently the husband can’t take constructive criticism, because he didn’t appreciate me telling him I found a shirt with his picture on it.

 

When you’re trying to be in character but you just look extremely nauseated (T) and like you just soiled your pants (me).

 

Luca’s entire trick-or-treating loot. Pro tip: Don’t give your toddler a bag to collect candy. Each house they go to, they’ll drop the two pieces they have in their hands and take two more pieces.

 

Who else thinks we should make a petition to move Halloween to summer? Half the country can’t see anybody’s costumes under their winter coats!

 

If looking at my family pics makes you feel better about your parenting, check out my other posts in the series:

Our Family Vacation In Crappy Cell Phone Pics

Our Summer Week In Crappy Cell Phone Pics

The Original Our Week In Crappy Cell Phone Pics

MORE of the Funniest Parents on Twitter

Given the events of the this week, I’ve been walking around with a dark cloud over my head as I’m sure most Americans are. Everyone says to spread kindness in the wake of tragedy but it can be hard when you feel so heavy and gloomy.

Because I think we all need to lift our spirits for a few minutes, I decided to do another roundup of the funniest parents on Twitter. Kudos to these people for spreading a little joy through their clever and/or sarcastic use of 140 characters.

Feel free to follow anyone on here and make your twitter feed 1000% more awesome.

funniest parents on twitter

 

 

If you enjoyed these, check out part 1 of Funny Parents on Twitter.

And have a laugh at my expense with my Crappy Cell Phone Pics!

5 Times When Parenting is Torture For Introverts

parenting for introverts

Growing up as an introvert, there were plenty of times I wished for a hole to open up in the floor for me to crawl into. My birthday? Sure, I liked a party, but having all my friends sing to me and watch me open presents was bordering on traumatic for me.

One of my earliest childhood memories involves being tortured by my own shyness. I was in preschool and a musician had come to visit our class. He sang a song that went around to each child making a rhyme with their name. As I realized that it would eventually come around to me, I waited in horror while counting the number of children I had before me. By the time he sang “willaby, wallaby Waitlin, and elephant sat on Caitlin”, I thought I would just about die from humiliation.

In school I hated any project I had to do that involved speaking in front of the class. I also hated group projects where the group members were assigned, forcing me to talk with people I didn’t know.

parenting for introverts

While growing older in some ways forced me out of my shell, my natural temperament has always been to keep my distance from people I don’t know well and to uphold a measure of privacy.

Then, motherhood came a knocking.

With it, a barrage of unwanted attention from family, acquaintances, and strangers alike. Here are 5 times parenting was pure torture for me as an introvert.

1. Late pregnancy

Why is it that common societal norms of politeness and personal space go out the window when a woman is growing a child?

Suddenly, people who would never give me more physical contact than a handshake now think it’s ok to touch, grab, even rub my belly. The exact place where I’m feeling the most protective and vulnerable! Who decided that’s ok to do?

Then there’s the comments. Pointing out parts of my body that are changing, as if I’m not acutely aware of them myself. Making comments about how big or not big I am, picking me apart like I’m a piece of livestock for sale.

By the end of pregnancy I dreaded ever leaving my house because I felt like I made a scene everywhere I went. The icing on the cake was a grocery store cashier who asked me how far along I was. When I replied “38 weeks”, she came back with “better have someone else do your shopping for you, you look like you’re about to break your water right here in the store!” So sorry my big pregnant existence is stressful for you!

2. After giving birth

The torture doesn’t stop for introverts once the pregnancy is over. Actually, it’s only the beginning.

After you give birth, everyone wants to know the story of your hoo-ha. There is no such thing as privacy when birth is involved. “C-section or vaginal? Did you need stitches? DID YOU RIP ALL THE WAY THROUGH TO YOUR BUTT???”

Or another classic: “Did you poop when you were pushing? No? Oh you probably did but you just didn’t know it.”

Not long after all vagina and excrement-related questions cease, it will move to your breasts.

“How is breastfeeding going? Are your nipples cracked? You know you’re supposed to pull on them and toughen them up before giving birth.”

If you ever felt like you had privacy and dignity, kiss it goodbye because that’s all over now!

3. The toddler stage

Nothing is more attention-grabbing than an adorable, loud, and mobile toddler. From the young toddler wrecking displays in the grocery aisle, to the older toddler demanding an answer to “WHY IS THAT LADY SO FAT?” they are constantly drawing attention to themselves in public. And all that attention quickly turns to Mom.

Then there are the dreaded toddler activities. As much as my homebody self would love to stay home with my little ones, my toddlers were way too active and had to be kept busy. But at that age they are too little to do activities their own, which means I have to join in. Sitting in a circle of parents singing itsy-bitsy spider finger plays is exactly the type of thing I find humiliating.

4. Birthday parties, sports games, and school pickups

Pretty much anytime there’s a group of parents standing around waiting, I’m going to be awkward. It comes from being forced to stand near a group of people that I only know as “Ella’s mom” or “Probably Jacob’s Dad”. I might know who they are, but I don’t know them enough to have a meaningful conversation with them. And I’m an absolute nightmare at small talk. I either over-share or can’t come up with a thing to say.

Since I avoid small talk, people perceive me as being cold at best, or snobby at worst.

parenting for introverts

5. Parent-teacher conferences

Even when my kid has the kindest and most personable teacher, I dread parent-teacher conferences. This person knows my child well, which feels like the equivalent of knowing the contents of my underwear drawer or medicine cabinet. I’m fully aware that they know quite a bit about me, but I don’t know exactly what they know. This state of vulnerability makes me uneasy.

Another part of the awkwardness involves my children not following the rules. Inevitably, the teacher is going to tell me about times my child misbehaved. I never know the correct response to this. “I’m sorry”“He also doesn’t listen at home“??

My last parent-teacher conference went something like this:

Teacher: Your child only seems to put effort into classwork when he decides it’s interesting to him.

Me: Yes, it can be difficult to get him motivated.

Teacher: Do you have any ideas of how to keep him engaged?

Me: Umm.. you could try to make your lessons more interesting? *facepalm*

Other difficulties with parenting for introverts

Introverts need a certain amount of alone time every day to center themselves. Small children need alone time approximately never. And for me, with 6 of us living under the same roof, there is no such thing as alone time.

parenting for introverts

Children are also curious and inquisitive. Parents are constantly barraged with questions, sometimes the same ones over and over. Unlike some people, *cough* my husband *cough cough*, I don’t tune them out and not answer their questions. I reply to every last one. By the end of the day I feel like I have not stopped talking for the last twelve hours. It’s exhausting for anyone, but especially for introverts who need quiet to reflect.

Lastly, your love for your children will compel you to do things you absolutely hate. Starting in preschool, my children’s school has invited parents to surprise their child’s class on a random day by coming in to read a book, aka the “mystery reader”. I would be happy to help the class in a way (seriously ANY other way) that doesn’t involve 20 children and three teachers listening to me read out loud. But my oldest child gets so excited at the thought of me coming in to her class and surprising her, I feel guilted into doing it every year.

My children are still young, so I’m sure there is more torture on the horizon for this introverted mom!

Are YOU an introvert parent? What has been a struggle for you?

Leave a comment (under the post title!)

Our Family Vacation in Crappy Cell Phone Pics

Real Mom Recs family vacation

You know that Onion article called “Mom Spends Beach Vacation Assuming All Household Duties In Closer Proximity To Ocean”? Our family vacation had a healthy dose of THAT.

Traveling with kids is never really a vacation for the parents who still need to do all their regular tasks just in a different place. In addition to that, I pretty much ignored all of my own travel advice, threw the kids completely off their schedules, and overstimulated them. We did make some pretty awesome memories through all of that too. We got to visit with extended family and make a few fun stops on the way back.

Check out our family vacation through my crappy cell phone pics!

(And lest you think these are just the outtakes and we have some pretty looking album full of nice pictures somewhere… NOPE. These are it.)

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

John and the girls drove, while I flew down with those-who-can’t-handle-long-car-rides. Use your imagination about the other plane passengers passing by the open seat next to us. Us being the lady with the baby and hyperactive little boy. The first 50 people to pass us by smirked as if to say “NOT IT!” and the unlucky winner (with no other option) reluctantly sat down next to us. I almost felt bad for the poor sucker, until I realized the only worse seat on the plane was MINE.

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

Zari, as the plane is ascending into the clouds: “wait, are we gonna see GOD anywhere up here???” (To buy a minute of quiet I told him “maybe if you look really really hard”.)

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

We were visiting family for a baptism, so you can see how delighted the kids were to be spending their vacation going to church.

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

I dressed the kids cute, so I get faces like these.

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

“Here Dad, let’s play that fun game where I take my shoe off and then you have to put it back on. How else am I supposed to spend an hour in church???”

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

That sweet family photo where Mom and Dad are trying their best not to lose it on the one kid who keeps ruining the picture.

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

I told them to look like they like each other and I’m pretty sure Tiana’s giving me the kid-version of the middle finger.

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

That time I sat there taking pics of my kid without even realizing he was playing with a DIRTY CIGARETTE BUTT. Still waiting for that Mom of the Year trophy.

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

How did I not notice that my son has the gangliest arms on the planet before taking this picture?

Real Mom Recs family vacation

That picture where Tiana is trying not to pee her pants because she needs to go and there are fountains everywhere.

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

“Hey Mom, anytime you want to stop forcing me to smile while being blinded by direct sunlight, that would be greeeeeat.”

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

Apparently kids really can sleep anywhere. The trick is you need to sleep torture them for three days first.

Family vacation in crappy cell phone picsVacation day 4: Baby wakes up with a suspicious rash, and we realize he hasn’t just been tired and miserable from traveling but because he has roseola. (Where is that trophy, anyway?)

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

We still need to make this trip fun for the non-sick kiddos, so let’s just go ahead and get them ice cream cones bigger than their heads and hope for the best.

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

Water park day. No idea why Tiana thinks she needs to hold her breath while sitting on a giant tube in the open air.

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

All of my kids love lazy rivers, which is proof that they take pleasure in seeing their parents in an extended state of panic.

Family vacation in crappy cell phone pics

Water park trip: great fun for 3/4 of the my children

RealMomRecs family vacation

Looking into the lake… T:”Look, a fish.”
Z: “Wow, a turtle too!”
E: “Well, I see a shark…” 😆

Real Mom Recs family vacation

Science center fun! Sicky boy is feeling much better and would like to spend the entire day driving this pretend ambulance.

Real Mom Recs family vacation

Why is it that being sick so unfun, but pretending to be sick is super fun?

RealMomRecs family vacation fun

“Sure Mom, just keep sitting there taking that picture while I do all the work around here!”

RMR family vacation

Thanks to this fun simulator, the kids are now wishing for our house to get hit by a tornado.

Vacation came to an end, and we all made it back in one piece. 82 loads of laundry later, life is back to business as usual. I’ll get around to putting those suitcases away one of these days.

Don’t miss the other installments of Our Crappy Cell Phone Pics!