Rolling Down The Lego River

And there it was. No sooner had I attempted the first dunk of my fun size Mars bar into my milky tea that I heard it, the mogwai-like gurgling of our newest addition – Thing 3 was awake…

I downed tools, secretly wept and prepared myself for another couple of hours of feeding, burping, peeing, wiping and crying. And that’s just me. Thing 3 arrived four weeks ago as if from nowhere (my wife will argue differently) and with Thing 1 and Thing 2 already tucked up in bed It gradually dawned on me that my nightly ‘Netflix fix’ will slowly become a thing of the past. Stranger Things Season 5 will be out before I’m back In my lounge pants and Mars bar heaven.

So there you have it, I’m a Dad of 3 boys aged ‘just turned 5’, terrible 2 (and I mean terrible) , and 4 weeks old. I love them dearly but I’ll be honest I’d been dreading the arrival of Thing 3.

Call me selfish – maybe I am – but I’ve never enjoyed the first 4-6 months of a baby’s life. Actually scrap that, I’ve never enjoyed my life for the first 4-6 months of a baby’s life. Hmmm yes, I must be selfish (my wife doesn’t argue with me on this)

sleep

Three kids is a game changer, I’m shattered, just shattered (and yes before you shoot me, my wife is even more shattered). It was Thing 1’s birthday last week and we had a party for him in a play centre – Kids Space Rathfarnham – which was very good although I probably lost 3lbs due to the crazy heat in the place (Mankini next time for shizzle). There was a lot of running around, wiping brows cheering on kids but being the CPO (Chief Present Officer) in our household I knew what lay ahead – helping Thing 1 construct his massive Superman Lego city AND following through on my promise – why oh why – to go camping in the back garden in his new tent. Thing 2 – who’s potty training I might add – had a wonderful idea of pitching the ‘ent’, as he calls it, and playing with the Lego in this newly pitched fort. BOOM, two birds with one stone I thought.

So we pitched, we played, we laughed, we shouted, we cried and shouted some more before we tucked into dinner and prepped ourselves for night camp (if only we could drop the ‘m’ I thought).

tent

And so night fell. With my stamina dwindling and Thing 1 & 2 in sugar rush heaven we hit the ‘ent’ for what was to be a long long night ahead. I introduced the boys to an app I’d found called Voice Changer with Effects (free on Android) and they had great fun hearing themselves back as robots, creatures, cyborgs, extraterrestrials and more.

It was only at 3am when I was woken by a Monster-like voice and some Lego bricks floating (yes floating) past me that I realised something was wrong… Thing 2 had woken up. He’d found my phone and was standing behind me when he accidently hit the Monster voice.

He scared himself ‘piss-less’ to the point of peeing at full pace against the inside of the tent, creating a Niagara Falls-like gush straight through Lego Metropolis and past good old Daddy’s ears.

As the little Monster’s voice said ‘Daddy I’m doing a wee wee, Daddy I’m doing a wee wee, Stranger Things I thought. Stranger Things indeed, but probably season 6 at this rate.

DD

( -_- )
<) )>
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‘I Like Mummy Better’: Coping With Toddler Favouritism!

“Daddy, I love mummy more than you”. So said our 3-year-old to me yesterday as I attempted my daily high-five ritual as I walked in the door from work (I’m cool like that).

It was only a week ago as we lay on a Mediterranean beach lashing Factor 50 onto our ghost-like Irish bodies that he said the same to my then distraught wife. I on the other hand quickly ordered another Apfelspritz and lapped up the accolades of being the best dad in the world.

One week later and oh how the tides have changed. The fickle nature of kids at that age make you feel like a contestant on Big Brother – I nominate ‘fat daddy’ to leave the house.

What? But wait, wait, hold on, what about all the Star Wars Lego I bought you last week or the ice cream that you loved until it melted onto your hand and you had a conniption fit?

Eh what about all the times….‘Fat Daddy’ it’s time to leave the house’. Goodbye.

Oh, where is Emma Willis when you need her?

Parents Kissing Child

I joke of course. It’s completely natural for kids to favour one parent over another whenever it suits them. It’s a part of growing up and exerting their independence and more often than not it boils down to “Who gave me what I wanted today? Who entertained me the most today? Who is easier to manipulate?!”.

We went through all of this with Thing 1 (our 5-year-old) so it’s water off a duck’s back but if you’re made up of the ‘sensitives’ it can feel like a real kick in the guts.

Just remember that they are not trying to hurt you, instead, you or your partner might just meet specific emotional needs at certain times….in my case, it’s usually jellies.

So how do you deal with favouritism? In my opinion, it’s quite simple.

1 – Don’t take it personally
Remember that you’re dealing with a little person who isn’t emotionally sophisticated yet. Take it on the chin, laugh it off and carry on as normal.

The one thing about kids is that they are always learning what they can and can’t get away with. They tend to repeat whatever gets a reaction out of you so If your child’s favouritism causes one or both of you to react in a big way, whether good or bad and to pay more attention to them, chances are they will keep up the routine.

2 – Revise Your Good Cop, Bad Cop Roles
Always being the good cop and avoiding the tough love, tough-talking disciplinarian role isn’t good for anyone. The bad cop will always be seen in a negative light so it’s very important to unite and share both roles with your partner.

3 – Schedule some One-On-One Time
It’s common for a child to develop some resentment when one parent is away from home more than the other. If you are the one who’s being favoured then it might be an idea to get out of the house for a bit and let your partner spend some alone/bonding time with the child.

Likewise, if you’re the one up for ‘eviction’, hang out with your kid. Spend some quality time with them. Bring them out. Get them some jellies (sugar-free options available – including natures sweets aka fruit!). Play games with them. Show them that you love them and that you love spending time with them. Get down with the kids so to speak.

4 – Don’t Snub or Punish
Whether they want to know or not, make sure that your kid is aware of how much you love them and that you’re always there for them. Don’t punish them or snub them – jokingly or not –as it could make the ‘situation’ worse.

I say ‘situation’ because fleeting favouritism is more often than not a phase that all kids go through. It’s part and parcel of a child’s development and isn’t always about true resentment or lack of emotional connection with one parent.

DD

Ps. I was back to being the world’s best dad again last night and never got to meet Mrs Willis. Groan.


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THINGS I LEARNED AS A PARENT LAST YEAR (Part 2)

1. 90% of eating with your kids in a restaurant is preventing them from (1) putting food in their drinks or (2) spilling their drinks.

2. ‘Dad, why don’t you let the radio sing instead?’, was just cruel and unnecessary.

3. Trying to open a Capri Sun without it squirting out is one of parenting’s toughest challenges

4. Wearing a Halloween Mask in bed has been a great way to stop our kids from wanting to sleep in our bed at night.

5. You don’t know creepy until you’ve had a child stand over you at 3am and whisper ‘Bunny says he doesn’t like you”. #TimeToChangeTheUndies.

6. Did you know that blueberries can pass through a baby’s digestive system fully intact? Same goes for sweetcorn, carrots, potatoes…

7. One of the best sounds you’ll ever hear is your partner and kids in fits of laughter in the next room.

8. . That said, hearing Thing 1 (5) ‘teaching’ and explaining something to his younger brother (3) makes everything in my world completely insignificant.

9. Son: “DAAAD I only asked you to hold my ice cream”.
Me: “Yes and that was a mistake. Now you must learn from it..

10. The one thing I have in common with our baby is we both cry when our bottles are empty.

11. 6yo: “Daddy what does neglect mean?”
Me: Sssh I’m watching the golf.

12. “I want a snack” – my 4yo when he’s eating.

13. Nothing halts having fun with your kids quicker than when one of them grabs your glasses.

14. We teach our kids not to lie and then 30 seconds later tell them that their picture is excellent.

15. Before i had kids i thought only perverts sniffed underwear.

16. If you yell “what are you up to” and your kids say “nothing” that’s kid code for “you better get off your fat a** and check on us”

17. Always double-check the garden after you’ve had a party because seeing a 3 year old chew on a cigarette butt is all sorts of wrong.

18. If you want to see a full-blown meltdown, give a boy a girl’s party bag by ‘mistake’.

19. Always make sure that your son is looking into the toilet (or even at the toilet) when you offer to have a ‘wee wee’ sword fight with them. #DadsWillUnderstand

20. I’ve been present at 3 births (right hand is still fractured) but nothing compares to the facial expressions of a toddler trying to squeeze out a poo.

21. Sunday bedtime is usually when my kids like to discuss quantum physics

22. It’s also the time when my kids ‘need to finish’ their homework.

23. …and it’s also the time when I tend to lose my sh*t.

24. I only bring my kids to the library so that I can get some peace and quiet.

25. I’m never more nervous than when I insist we’re out of something and my wife goes to look for it herself.

26. You haven’t really been patronised until a 6yo hugs you and starts patting you on the back

27. You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make my 3yo wipe his own arse.

28. Its weird how 6 glasses of water seems impossible but 6 glasses of wine can be done in one sitting.

29. ‘No I’ll do it myself’ is the reason i’ll never be on time for anything ever again.

30. ‘Really. Wow that’s mad’ – things I say when i’m not listening to my kids (or wife)

31. If bottled bath water was a thing, my kids would drink it by the gallon.

32. Even if my privates were on fire my kids would walk into the room and ask me for a snack.

33. 4yo: I don’t like it, it’s too spicy.
Me: IT’S A YOGURT

DD

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THINGS I LEARNED AS A PARENT LAST YEAR (Part 1)

*a selection of some of my random thoughts on being a dad to 3 boys*

1. Being a dad has thought me that you don’t need fun to have alcohol. very important lesson.

2. Three boys. Well I’ll tell ya one thing, farms don’t smell as bad as they used to.

3. Raising a toddler in particular is similar to being a dog. You’re continually sniffing an arse

4. If you think your kids will go to bed earlier and easier just because they didn’t nap, I can recommend the following book – ‘Parenting For Dummies’.

5. First child – healthy, organic, sugarless everything.
Third child – “Just pick it up and eat it” [as the microwave burrito falls on floor].

6. It’s getting harder to figure out a way to play with my kids without actually moving.

7. If you’ve never had a stalker experience just put a 1yo in a walker. #TheStalkerInTheWalker

8. It doesn’t matter how many degrees you have, trying to count out the correct amount of formula scoops is a head f*ck particularly if someones talking/screaming/sh*tting in the background.

9. The new title of my imaginary parenting book will be ‘Never mind, i’ll do it myself’.

10. If you slack off enough kids become very self sufficient, very fast.

11. Therefore teach your kid from an early age just how comfortable the couch is so that they aren’t constantly asking you to do stuff.

12. That said, no good ever comes from a toddler sitting naked on a couch.

13. Lads, always go big on Mother’s Day…I learned the hard way (the fact that she’s not actually your mother didn’t seem to matter).

14. If something looks like poo, feels like poo and smells like poo, it’s poo.

15. Pro Tip: Continually emphasising the need to keep your kid on a strict schedule makes it easier to say no to crappy things you’ve been invited to.

16. The smell of a bad nappy can linger in your house longer than your In-laws. I love them really (the in-laws that is).

17. When remarking that ‘they’ve gone down well tonight’ it’s always best to check that the monitor is on first.

18. Potty training and bubble baths should never be mixed – all will look lovely on the surface but what lies beneath can be the stuff of nightmares.

19. The day before you bring your kid to their first swimming class, put a little pee in their bath so that they are used to it.

20. Pro Tip: Have your partner leave you a voicemail of the baby screaming. Save it and play it to people when you need to get out of something.

21. If your buggy doesn’t have a cup holder, get one. Believe me, It’s easier to play Jenga on a bus than it is to steer a buggy with one hand.

22. Assuming they’re fit and able to pitch in, accept every bit of help on offer from granny and granddad, Their philosophical advice will be brilliant. Their medical advice not so much!

23. I’m noticing more and more that most of my sentences tend to start off strong and then trail off into sighs as my kids ignore me.

24. Planning our wedding was easier than planning dinner that everyone will eat.

25. It turns out that if you wait long enough to make dinner everyone will just eat cereal.

26. Hell hath no fury than a toddler who wants to peel a banana himself.

27. Hell hath no fury than a dad who has to clean up a squashed banana

28. Saying ‘see you in the morning’ as I tuck my kids into bed is pointless.

29. It’s possible to destroy a house with a granola bar.

30. It’s also possible to destroy a house with a rice cake.

31. The loudest sound in the world is my 4 year old shouting ‘Dad, I have to do a poo’ followed by “Dad can you wipe my bum”.

32. If you have Ready Brek on your crotch there’s a good chance nobody will sit beside you on the bus/train.

33. The trick to cleaning Weetbix off the floor is not to leave it for more than 8 seconds.

34. I wish my wallet refilled as quickly as our laundry basket.

35. It’s near impossible to not open your own mouth every time you try to feed a baby.

DD.

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Part 2 tmrw (unless you’re sick of reading this stuff – just let me know)

Digital Dad: Things I learned As A Parent Last Week

From Russian roulette to Santa bribes, here are 27 things that I learned as a parent over the past few weeks…

1.It only took two phone calls to Santa this morning to get the boys ready for school. Result.

2. Everywhere is a potential bed if you try hard enough.

3. Nobody is better at Hide-and-Seek than my wife when she hands me the kids after I walk in the door from work.

4. YAAAAY bath time.

  • 10 mins of tactical negotiations to get the kids into the bath.
  • 5 mins of screaming about how hot the water is (it’s not).
  • 1 min of fighting about which end of the bath my 4yo & 6yo want
  • 3 mins of screaming about getting shampoo in their eyes (I didn’t )
  • 5 mins of laughing as all 3 do farts in the bath- 2 mins of panic while we realise that Thing 3 (our toddler) ‘sharted’ not farted
  • 2 mins of ‘full monty’ dancing
  • 3 mins of post evacuation chasing of Thing 1 & Thing 2 in order to get them dry and dressed.

Parenting (with clean kids). So much fun.

5. My toddler should write a book called “Why one sock is better than two”.

6. My 4yo should write a book called “Why I never wait for the sun to come up”.

7. My 6yo should write a book called “Why I want to be a Lego Master Builder”.

8. *from upstairs to downstairs*

4yo: “DAAAAD. I got poo in my hair”

Me: “That’s not possible. Go to sleep”

Turns out it is possible. #ByeByePillow

9. “Noooo I want to do it, I want to do it. I said I WANTED TO DO IT” – my 4yo’s nightmare last night, presumably about traffic light buttons.

10. If you’re ever concerned about your kid’s hearing, just open a bag of crisps from another room.

11. it’s always fun to find a mushed up banana stuffed between your ‘no longer new’ couch.

12. Conjunctivitis.com – now there’s a site for sore eyes. #DadJoke

13. Parenting Russian Roulette – Undressing a standing toddler and removing the nappy not knowing if anything will fall out or slide down. I lost

14. Asking your kids to clean up their toys while you hold a large black bin liner is EXTREMELY effective. Try it.

15. It’s slowly dawning on me that the only way I’m going to ever use a gym is if I go to prison.

16. DING DONG.

Sales Caller: “Oh…..Hello there. Is your Mummy or Daddy there?”

4yo: “No”…while slowly closing door.

Sales Caller: *puzzled look*

Me: *feeling proud (as I hide) that he executed it perfectly*

#WitchingHour #GoAway #WorstTimeToCall

17. I can’t believe I was naive enough to think “a soft play centre will never see a cent of my money”

18. School photos; because who needs money to buy groceries this week.

19. My kids have reached that stage where they blame their farts on their mum now. Is it bad that I’m somewhat proud that they’ve reached this milestone?

20. Last Saturday my 4yo son took off his shoes, top and jeans and stood in a display shower in Homebase while waving at customers.

21. Meanwhile, my 6yo dressed up in full Nerf ‘combat’ gear yesterday just to kill a bug. I swear I could hear the bug p***ing himself…laughing.

22. If you’re bored, a fun thing to do is tell your kids that it’s time for bed, and repeat it again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and….you get the picture

23. “Ugh. I’m not eating that, it’s yucky” he says about tiny bruise on banana.

The same can’t be said for a stringy snot however (as I type ‘n’ wretch)

#OurFourYearOld

24. Cleaning your house is pointless if your children are going to continue living there.

25. I thought I was a normal person until my 4yo son asked me if “I’d eat a bowl of dog poo for 3 million euro pound money”

26. Never ever lose instructions for a newly bought Lego spaceship. #SundayRuined

27. I’m thinking of setting up a ‘Nap Club’. It’ll be kinda like a book club just without the books or the talking.

Let me know if you’re interested – SIGN UP HERE

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Best,

DD


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Digital Dad: Mums and their Boys – What to Expect.

Apart from the endless mess and the countless trains, planes and automobiles that you’ll have in your home, here’s what to expect and what you should know if you’re a Mum or Mum-to-be of a boy. I have three…

1. Tolerate the Fart (and burp)

Thankfully my good wife grew up with two boys, so she’s well equipped to deal with the potent mix of various human gasses. Kids think farting – or ‘whizzpopping’ as we call it – is funny, end of.

Obviously, there’s a time and a place to fart/not to fart and we try our best to teach our boys this valuable etiquette. For instance, try not to fart in public and if you do, apologise (where appropriate) and try to get out of there quickly without laughing, and never fart under your duvet unless you 1) don’t mind retching and passing out or 2) don’t like the person next to you in the bed.

Regardless of whether you personally find farts funny or not, they will happen so get used to it and learn to tolerate the little people that do.

2. Willy fascination will start early

Boys practically play with their willies from birth. It’s there, it’s dangly and it’s flexible. What more could they ask for?

For the rest of his life, this could be your son’s best and most treasured friend (why do you think we have pet names for them?). Don’t worry about this early fascination. It kind of never goes away (it’s his manhood after all) so be thankful that your son is inquisitive and no doubt thankful to you for his ‘dangly donger’.

Unfortunately no matter how fascinated they are with their ‘little soldier’ it’ doesn’t compute to them learning how to pee in the toilet properly…aka. the Tinkle Sprinkle

3. Get used to the Tinkle Sprinkle

Boys will sprinkle when they tinkle – i.e. urinate – on the toilet seat or bathroom floor etc. You’ll have to get used to this. In fact, boys and pee go hand in hand (pardon the pun). Pee can go and will go everywhere and anywhere – e.g. floors, walls, plants, toys, shoes etc.

The older they get, the better their aim becomes, but with age comes greater range which in itself can be a problem. Keep wipes beside the toilet and whatever you do DON’T keep a toilet rug.

Mum and her boys

4. Safety standards go out the window

OK, so I’m the type of Dad that laughs and shouts ‘hooray’ when one of my boys falls or walks into a table, door etc. I don’t do this because I’m mean or I enjoy seeing them hurt themselves. No, quite the opposite actually. I do it because like most kids, as soon as your child has an accident they turn around to see what your initial reaction is. And if it’s a reaction of horror, angst, worry, or a complete overreaction, well then your child is going to overreact too – and most likely burst into tears.

I instead pretend it’s a game, so that my reaction when they look at me is one of fun and silliness. No, it doesn’t always work. Yes, your kids will most likely cry anyway, but your reaction will help massage the perceived seriousness of the accident.

Boys will be rough and tough. They’ll climb furniture and trees. They’ll jump off chairs and tables. They’ll shoot each other with Nerf guns and most likely give each other wedgies when they are older. This is part and parcel of being a boy regardless of how odd and weird you think it is. Rethink your safety standards and try not to wrap your kid up in cotton wool, unless he needs it obviously.

Just keep the Band-Aids handy.

5. Accept the Full Monty

This goes hand-in-hand (sorry again) with the ‘Dangly Donger’. Boys love to parade around in the nude – well at least my boys do anyway – whether it’s the full monty or just panning out watching RTÉjr in their boxer shorts.

As soon as they are able to dress and undress themselves, their inner Chippendale is released and unfortunately there’s no going back. Embrace it and let them have fun.

Just don’t ask where they got it from.

6. Don’t compare Apples to Oranges

Boys tend to be a bit slower and lazier than girls when reaching milestones. Apparently, I was 21 months old before I started to walk and guess what – Thing 2 was 18 months old too. My goddaughter was only 12 months before she started to walk, so give your little man all the the encouragement, support and time he needs.

This goes for potty training too – we still have a nappy loving 3-year-old who hasn’t cottoned on.

Boy eating pizza

7. Compare Apples to Oranges

…when it comes to drama and tantrums.

Boys, just like girls can throw the ultimate hissy fits over the smallest of issues.  ‘That’s my ninja turtle’, ‘no that’s my Ninja turtle’ or ‘I wanted to sit there…’ etc etc.

A tantrum is a tantrum and my boys are experts at stomping, shouting, door slamming, crying and ‘you’re not my friend-ing’.  True, boys can be more easy-going and agreeable but don’t let anyone fool you into thinking that they aren’t dramatic.

8. Stock up on food.

Boys are active. Active boys get hungry. Hungry boys get cranky. Parents hate cranky. Cranky loves food… this is an endless cycle.

As your boys get bigger and bolder, they become little eating robots and they’ll want to eat more and more. the fridge will be continually raided so keep it stocked up and keep cranky at bay.

9. They will adore you.

When our friends heard that we were having a third boy, nearly everyone sympathetically patted me on the back and said that my wife lucked out and that she would be spoiled by ‘her boys’ for forever and a day. Me, on the other hand, would be tossed to the ‘old-age scrapheap’ because I don’t have a daughter and thus I’d be feeding off scraps for the rest of my life.

A slight exaggeration of course (I hope) but my three boys absolutely idolise their Mum (and rightly so) and there really is no bond like it.

I’ll no doubt be relegated to the point where I’m being bought crappy socks for Christmas and my birthday while mum gets pampered but I’m OK with that, kind of.

Goofy kid

10. Expect the goofy

If you watch Modern Family, then imagine a mini-Phil Dunphy. Boys will be goofy, quirky, weird, and eccentric – and that’s perfectly OK. Be prepared for it. I guarantee you’ll be called (or have been called) poopy head, poopy pants or smelly pants at least once. Am I right? Sure I was called Moo-head (a first for me) only last week by Thing 1 because I forgot to put a spoon in his lunchbox. Silly Daddy.

Boys will have the oddest conversations with other kids and they’ll play the strangest games but again that’s OK. I love quirky. I love eccentricity and you’ll find me laughing all day long at home (and even joining in) with my crazy boys.

Why be just another brick in the wall, after all?

Man, I love them.

DD

Catch me on: Facebook |t: @DigitalDadDiary


Come back next week for my next installment. In the meantime, if you have any funny stories or topics that you’d like discussed feel free to get in touch.

 

Funny Homework Fails. The Future is in Good Hands!

Kids not only saying the strangest things they’ve also been know to write them down too…

My 5-year-old is starting to get homework and to say that some of his written thoughts are unique would be an understatement.

So much so, I decided to scour the interweb to get an idea of some of the unique and funny things that children have written in their homework.

Here’s a snapshot of what I found…

1. Out of the mouth of babes…*

Source: Pinterest

2. There’s no flies on this kid.

Source: Reddit

3. It’s not wrong.

Source: Reddit

4. Buoyancy concerns.

Source: Pinterest

5.  Can’t argue with that logic.

Source: imgur

6. The Terminator. Yikes. Do not try this at home.

Some eyebrow raising homework

7. There’s nothing wrong with their maths.

Source: Pinterest

8. Poor Mrs Thompson.

Source: imgur

9. At least they know their anatomy.

source: Reddit

10. I think we all felt this about homework.

Source: Pinterest

11. Survival of the fittest.

Source: Redditt

12. The next Carrie Bradshaw?

Source: imgur

13. Godspeed.

Source: Pinterest

14. Father Figure.

Source: Reddit

15. Tony has a serious flattop going on!

Source: imgur

16. Thanks for keeping me alive mom.

Source: Pinterest

17. Blunt problem solving.

Source: Reddit

18. Lola loves pizza.

Source: imgur

19. At least it’s not as bad as secondary smoke.

Source: Pinterest

20. Eye spy.

Source: Pinterest

If you have any homework fails that you’d like to share with me, feel free to comment/submit them below.

Thanks

DD

*drinkaware.ie


Catch me on: Facebook | Twitter |

Digital Dad: Whip Yourself Back Into Shape!

So before ‘Baby Burpalot’ came on the scene 9 months ago I had established somewhat of a daily fitness regime albeit only after the other two kids had gone to bed and I had let my fajitas digest.

Nowadays however, as much as I try to curtail my sugar consumption, I find myself running out of time in the evenings; what with coming home from work, feeding the kids, changing the kids, playing with the kids, reading to the kids, chasing the kids who have now hidden on me, finding the kids, invariably nursing Thing 2 (who probably ran into a wall), brushing their teeth, wiping their butts noses, wrestling them into bed, prepping for the five further rounds of wrestling them back into bed and finally cleaning up the house.

Oh parenting, it’s such a blast…

I’ve contemplated the get-up and go early morning jog but honestly the kids would probably latch onto my ankles before I even left the house. They’re great like that; “Ha what’s daddy doing trying to get out for a jog? Oh, silly daddy. Let’s hit him in the privates with a Nerf Blaster and jump on his back when he’s bent over. Once we’re on his back, let’s elbow him in the ribs…he loves that”.

Ok, so I’m embellishing slightly but only slightly. I do walk around the house with a Nerf gun holstered to my leg purely for self-defense.

Anyway, I know I’m not the only parent to struggle and juggle with their time and if you are one of these people then keep reading because I’ve come up with some very effective home fitness techniques to whip you back into shape.

1. The Cavity Kid
This is a very simple one. If you have a spare cavity block or two lying around the house, don’t let them go to waste. Place your child on one of the blocks and run around the garden with it. It’s great for the glutes and enhancing your shoulder definition.

If your little one moans about it being sore on their little legs just place a few paper towels underneath them. Likewise, glue is very handy if they keep slipping off!

2. The Sugar Rush
Give your child lots of sweets before they go to bed. You’ll spend the next couple of hours chasing them back into bed. It’s fantastic cardio especially if your kids sleep upstairs. Your calves and thighs will be toned in no time.

3. The Numb-bell
This is an easy one, although you’ll need the right type of nappy for it to be effective. As the name suggests, place a 10lb dumbbell in your child’s nappy and rock them to sleep in your arm.

Regardless of whether they sleep or not, you’ll thank me for the long lasting effects it’ll have on your numbing arms. I’m still struggling to type this after last night’s session.

4. The Insomnia
If you want to increase your stamina, simply lie awake worrying about all the things that could happen to your kids over the course of their lives. The list will be endless and If you want to add some extra stress, turn off the baby monitor and lie there wondering if they are OK.

Exercise With Kids
Caption

5. The Horseback
If you’re good at multi-tasking then this one is for you. Lie flat down on your stomach and let your kid(s) straddle your back. Slowly raise your body up and down using only your hands, always being careful not to drop your child.

If you have long hair sometimes your child might like to pull at it. Also if you’re hungry you could put a plate of food on the floor and eat off it using only your mouth.

6. The PopCake
You’ll need a large bag of popcorn and some rice cakes for this one.

  • Step 1: Get the kids all riled up about watching a movie and eating delicious popcorn.
  • Step 2: Give them said popcorn along with some nice delicate rice cakes.
  • Step 3. Tell them that they can eat them on the carpet, the couch or anywhere in the house for that matter.
  • Step 4. Hoover frantically for the next hour.

Repeat daily for effective bicep and tricep definition.

7. The Moan
Complain to your wife/girlfriend, who has just had a baby, that you feel fat, overweight and tired. Prepare to run, very, very fast.

8. The Flatpack
It doesn’t matter what it is but buy something that needs to be assembled and then Invite your children into the room while you unpack it and attempt to put it together. You’ll break into a great sweat while you chase after them for the screws, the tools or the now ripped instructions.

I spent nine hours on Saturday putting half a bunk bed together. NINE HOURS, and I’m only halfway done. I kid you not.

9. The Relaxer
This is a close relative to ‘The Moan’ above.

While your partner is working to the bone cleaning up after everybody, simply sit back on the couch and kick up your heels. I won’t tell you what happens next but you’ll definitely break a sweat…if not a leg.

10. The Dodger
This one is fantastic for enhancing your coordination. If you find your partner slaving over a delicious home cooked meal, simply complain about the mess they have made. Believe me, you’ll be dodging flying cups, plates, tins, cutlery, you name it.

As I said, it’s great for your coordination.

Best of luck with them.

DD

Ps. The above ‘exercises’ are meant as a joke and in no way adhere to any health and safety standards….just in case you get the urge to try them! #LegalSmegal


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Digital Dad: 25 Unapologetic Dad Jokes

I scoured the interweb and found a few cringe-worthy dad jokes that made me laugh. Hopefully, they’ll give you a giggle too…

1. My best mate David lost his ID. So now I call him Dav.

2. Did you hear about the kidnapping at school?

It’s okay. The teacher woke him up

3. To the person that invented zero. Thanks for nothing.

4. I was playing chess with my friend and he said “let’s make this interesting”.

So we stopped playing…

5. What kind of lights did Noah use on his Ark? Floodlights.

6 What do you call a bear with no ears?

B

7. I always bring an extra pair of socks when I go golfing. Just in case I get a hole in one.

8. Why was the Lego man sick?

He had a blocked nose.

10. The future, the present and the past walked into a room. Things got very tense.

11. Did you hear about the paper joke?

Never mind it’s tearable.

12. I used to be addicted to the hokey pokey. Then I turned myself around.

13. I hate when people ask me where I see myself in 3 years.

It’s not like I have 2020 vision.

14. Don’t spell part backwards…it’s a trap.

15. A man is washing his car with his son.

The son asks, “Dad why can’t you use a sponge instead?”

16. What do you call a donkey with three legs? Wonkey

17. My neighbour knocked on my door at 2.30am.

Luckily I was still up playing my drums.

18. Did you hear the joke about unemployed people? Never mind, it doesn’t work.

19. I was walking down the road yesterday when somebody threw a block of cheese out a window.

That’s not very mature I said…

20. What do you call a deer with no eyes? No eye deer.

21. What do you call a singing computer?

A Dell

22. What do you call a tower that can’t stand? The Eiffel Tower

23. Son: “Dad I’m cold”

Dad: “Stand in the corner of the room”

Son: “Uh. why?”

Dad: “Because it’s 90 degrees.”

24. Did you hear about the new movie ‘constipation’? It hasn’t come out yet.

25. When does a dad joke become a dad joke?

When the punchline becomes apparent.

That’s all folks

If you have any dad jokes that you think can make my list, feel free to let me know below.

DD


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Digital Dad: A Tip Of The Cap To Single Parents

The phone rang and like a bat out of hell she was gone.  As I watched the smoking tires fade into the distance I turned around and looked at my kids. One had two straws up his nose, one was munching on his foot and the other was picking out a now wet toilet roll that had fallen into the bowl…It was going to be a long, long weekend.

My gorgeous darling wife was heading abroad for four days with her friends and had been planning this well deserved trip for quite some time.

I was genuinely happy and excited for her but two weeks ago my safety net was pulled from underneath me when I found out that my parents and my in-laws wouldn’t be around for the weekend either. I was up nappy creek without a wipe, so to speak.

Like a bat out of hell she was gone.

We have three boys under six – five, three and 10 months – and although I’ve had the pleasure of spending time with them (aka parenting) on my own for a couple of days/nights before, this was going to be a different challenge. I won’t lie. I wasn’t looking forward to it.

And I know it’s parenting, I’m not disputing that or trying to wriggle away from any responsibilities but it’s tough for anyone to mind three kids without a break for a prolonged period of time.

Single parents, I salute you.

Dad Feeding Child

The prospect of feeding, changing, cleaning, cooking, playing, entertaining, nursing and ultimately refereeing for four full days probably isn’t something that anyone would look forward to. But hey, as I said that’s parenting for you.

I’ve had it relatively easy up until now, especially the past 10 months while my wife has been on maternity leave. Work has been my escape, my break if you will, from the monotony of day to day parenting so I haven’t had to do the ‘take for granted’ chores of cooking, cleaning, laundry et all.

I was up nappy creek without a wipe

Anyway, I embraced the weekend with all the gusto I had. Between a junior infant’s sports day, swimming lessons (Tip: don’t forget to remove the blue overshoes before you go shopping), GAA nursery, a pet shop visit and some pre-camping accessory shopping for this coming weekend’s ‘Camp Friends’ reunion we had enough to keep us busy.

The jewel in the crown, however, was the trampoline I bought which I was hoping would keep them occupied for most of the weekend…thankfully it did.

And it was the trampoline; or rather the assembling of same that highlighted just how important it is to spend quality time with your kids. After putting them up to bed on Friday night I proceeded to assemble said trampoline only for Thing 1, our five-year-old, to come back downstairs because ‘he wasn’t tired’.

He volunteered to help me ‘read’ the instructions and for the next two hours, I did a one hour job.

Realising after some time that he wasn’t really helping me or that I didn’t need his help he got upset and it was in that moment I realised that for him this was a ‘I’ll show daddy what a big boy I am’ bonding moment.

I was too distracted with reaching the end goal to cop it, but thankfully I had enough smarts to get him to help me put the final spring on the trampoline so that he could finish the job.

It ended well and I made a big thing of him staying up late and helping me. He was proud of himself.

I also promised myself to never let anything distract me from those fleeting bonding moments again.

They are precious and by god kids grow up so quickly.

Dad and Baby

It was being on my own with them that I got to appreciate just how lovely my kids are. They adapted to my style of parenting. I let them wear odd socks because that’s ok. I let Thing 2 pour milk into his dinner – on the proviso that he eats/drinks it all – because he’s quirky like that.

I let them sleep in their t-shirt and shorts because they didn’t want to waste time getting dressed in the morning…trampolining was more important.

Granted this wouldn’t be the norm if I was a stay at home dad.

My methods would change and evolve but even still, I realised after just four days that a stay at home parent is not the life for me.

It’s not that it’s a hard job per say, and it’s not easy either, it’s just relentless.

Even the small things like hanging pictures, changing bulbs, mowing the lawn, shopping, cooking, cleaning, laundry, tidying up, become big tasks over time. It’s just nonstop.

I had the cushion and comfort of knowing that my wife would be coming home but if I didn’t I’m not sure how I’d feel. I have a new found appreciation and respect for my wife and stay at home parents but more importantly for single parents who do this day in day out while also trying to hold down a job. After looking after everybody else, it’s the lack of that precious ‘you time’ that really stood out for me. If that’s you, I salute you.

Multitask Mum

As I said at the start of this piece, my wife deserves a mini holiday with the girls. I’ll deserve it too when my time comes. All parents deserve it. Everybody needs a break whether it’s on their own, with friends or as a couple. Life is short. It’s to be enjoyed not suffered and certainly, that’s how we as a family live it.

That said, I was dreading the weekend. Some of my mates were in the same boat so being the nerds that we are we set up a ‘Single Dads’ WhatsApp group and exchanged war stories.

One of the lads even pretended that he’d allowed his kids to stay up and watch the Champions League Final even though we all know that he’d simply failed to get them down to bed that night.

Anyway being a glutton for punishment I decided to invite the lads and their kids over for a ‘Trampoline BBQ’. In for a penny, in for a pound and all that. Nine kids and three adults later there we all were happily soaking up the sun heaping self praise on each other while the trampoline did all the work.

We thought we were great. It was only four days but ignorance is bliss.

One thing we all acknowledged though was how tough a job it is as a stay at home parent and how much tougher it must be to raise kids on your own – whether by choice or not. It’s all consuming, it’s relentless and it’s often thankless and we only needed a few days over a long weekend to experience this.

We couldn’t fathom what it must be like if you have to hold down a job on top of all of that.

So as the title of this piece suggests, I salute and tip my hat to all the hard working single parents out there.

Best,

DD

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