Posted in Canada, Coffee, Daddy, family, Life, Parenting, The Urban Daddy, Toronto, urbandaddyblog

Dads / Moms… Is it just me?


This is a question for the Dads and Moms out there in cyberspace.  Is it just me, or is it necessary to identify yourself as a parent when you approach another father / mother with small kids and offer assistance?

This morning, for example, I’m waiting for a client in my local Starbucks and it’s fairly busy in the store when in walks a mother carrying a baby in the bucket car seat in one hand and holding hands with a toddler in the other hand.

She orders her coffee, buys her daughter a treat and then finds the only open table which has one chair placed beneath it.  She places the bucket on the table, and sits her daughter in the chair.

Seeing this, I know that there is a bit of space at the large rectangle table in the back and I could totally go there to work, so I get up, and offer her my chair.

She politely denies.

Then I start thinking… I’m in my 40’s, and what’s left of my hair is pretty grey, I’m in a grey suit, and I don’t wear my wedding band because it doesn’t fit my finger (hello 1st child 25lb weight gain – 13 years ago) so maybe she politely declines because I’m a creepy guy offering her a seat.

Then I remember that creeps don’t wear suits.

Work with me here…

So I tell her it’s okay, she can have the seat because I’m going to sit in the back.

Then the panic in her eyes leaves, and she says that she appreciates the offer but she’s waiting for her coffee then she’s jetting out of here to a play date.

That told me 2 things;  Firstly, she recognized that I’m a parent too and I totally understand how brave she is with a child in a bucket and a toddler – just leaving the house should be commended.

Secondly, she might not have panicked if I had started with something like this; “Hey, would you like to use my seat? I’ve been there – have 3 of my own – you might be more comfortable, even for a minute, knowing your kids are safe and you can wait comfortably with them.

Or is that worse?

Am I reading too much into this?

Or being approached by a stranger, the default is to reject, not to engage and protect the kiddos.

Would love to hear everyone’s thoughts.

 

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Posted in Daddy, family, Life, Parenting, The Urban Daddy, Toronto

When Your Math-Loving Child Wants to Express Their Love…


My math-loving child must really love me!

He said;

“Dad, I love you more than a decimal irrational number…”

I tried to pretend that I knew what that meant, but then he said;

“It’s never ending…”

 

Awwww….

Posted in Baby Boy, Baby girl, boo, Coffee, Community, Daddy, family, Food, Happy Boy, hockey, Life, Linus, Parenting, Sports, Stewie, The Urban Daddy, Toronto, urbandaddyblog

Great Father’s Day! Happy Father’s Day, 2015.


Today is Father’s Day, 2015.

I love Father’s Day – not just today – but every day, because I feel that every day is Father’s Day.  I don’t need a day where it’s forced, but I know that I am not in the majority when it comes to the father’s role in a household.

I am a huge fan of Mother’s Day! – Not for being the only day to celebrate and appreciate your mother and the mother of your children – but because of the pain and effort Mother’s went through to have their children, and then go through for the rest of their lives for their children.

In most cases, without Mothers there would be no Fathers.

Growing up, I never felt the need to go hardcore on either Mother’s Day or Father’s Day because I tried to express my appreciation for my parents every day of the year, or at least more often than once a year.  I still bought the cards, chocolates, flowers and whatever else was available for my parents but I never saw it for more than an opportunity for retail stores and the greeting card market to cash in.

Fast forward to today, in 2015, and as a super-involved parent of 3 fabulous children, I feel the same way about Father’s Day for me.  I don’t need a tie, or cufflinks, nor a store bought card they signed, or another mug touting me as the World’s Greatest Dad.   All I really need is a hug, kiss, and a hand-made gesture of their appreciation for anything that I’ve done during the year.

As a result, my Father’s Day this year was awesome and here are some of the reasons why;

My almost 6-year-old daughter had a soccer tournament through her North Toronto Soccer team, and I’m the coach!  She started out playing soccer quite timidly, not surprising as the youngest of 3 kids whose older siblings are boys, but she has been great as of late.

Ever since a classmate of hers knocked her on her ass on purpose, which proved to be a wake-up call from my daughter, who got up, didn’t cry, dusted herself off, and then started playing more physically, which resulted in her scoring 3 goals including the game winner!

In fact, as this was the last game of the season for the team, there was one girl who had not scored a single goal all season, and after my daughter sped through the middle with the ball, and blew past both defenders, she waited at the goal line, called for this girl to run over, and she let the girl score her first goal.

The girl cried.

Her parents cried.

I almost cried.

If that is not the more empathetic thing a 5-year-old can do without being told to do so by anyone on the team, I don’t know what is.  It made me realize that this child is special, and maybe… just maybe, the parenting is paying off.

This girls parents told us that their daughter is going to remember this day forever.

From there, we packed a lunch, grabbed some extra tissues in case of nose bleeds, and we headed north to Richmond Hill, to take child number 1 to a birthday party in Vaughan Mills.

We walked around the mall, and walked and walked and walked, and then when we could walk no more, we headed out for dinner to one of my favourite restaurants, Mezza Notte Trattoria, where I ate their super incredible appetizer of escargot on a Portobello mushroom in a cognac sauce, and I had a delicious piece of halibut with tomatoes, olives, and angel hair pasta.

I asked if anyone wanted to try the escargot, and because it was Father’s Day, my daughter stepped up to the plate.  She said she liked it, but she also said that she liked it better than the whale we tried while in Iceland.

I had coffee after everyone was in bed with my long-time friend and jazz musician, Dr. Andrew Scott, and then we packed up our belongings and went to the Rinx, for an 11pm ball hockey game.  I’ve been running my own team in the YCBHL since I was 19-years-old, called the Tasmaniacs.  I love the 11pm games, and it’s great working up a sweat and getting to be all aggressive for an hour.  At this particular game, we only had 2 defenseman which meant I got to play almost the entire game.

Then we all got changed, I dropped Dr. Scott off at home, and my neighbour and I went for another coffee at 1am.

I think we got home at 2:30am, so what else can I do at that hour with everyone sleeping but blog.

I blogged, did some paperwork, and hit the bed.

I am truly blessed!

Every day is Father’s Day.

Posted in Daddy, family, Food, Life

When you don’t allow for comments on your blog, you get this instead.


I’m a very open-minded guy. I was not always this way, but as I have gotten older and wiser, I have certainly adopted the philosophy that people can, and will, do and say whatever they want, whenever they want and that is totally fine by me, so long as it doesn’t trample on my human rights.

I mean who are we to define items like marriage, or benefits, or set limits on what a person can and cannot do with their bodies… I find a lot of the laws and customs in practice today found their roots in a time when men were seen as better than woman, and heck, white men greater than everyone. We can now see clearly how wrong that has come to be, and if we step even further back, we can see that we are all just human beings trying to make the best lives for ourselves and our children on this planet we call earth.

So when I came across a blog / rant / all out melt-down around breastfeeding mothers and whether or not they should be allowed to breastfeed in restaurants – for attention – I decided to read along in hopes of finding another point of view or see that this post was just a joke.

However as I read it I became confused with the source of the ranting.  At first I thought the author was upset because woman breastfeed in restaurants and in some old-school way the author felt that woman’s breasts are sexualized and thus breastfeeding should be done discreetly.  Heck, from the tone of the post one would think that at this particular establishment there are boobs flying left and right, out there for everyone to see… A mother feeding her child.

Then as I read on and thought about the words, I thought that the author was upset because the restaurant in question asked a breastfeeding mother to feed her child in a discreet area of the restaurant away from, I dunno, people like this author who thing breastfeeding is gross, or ugly?!?  The mother declined, went to the press and from what I could gather all hell broke loose.  Either the restaurant was criticized for insensitivity, or there was a breastfeeding sit-in, who knows, but this author clearly felt that that mother needed to go somewhere else to breastfeed.

As a manager, this author would be the same type of employee who would have approached my wife – who breastfed our three children – and asked her to fed the baby in the bathroom.  UGH.  To that suggestion my wife would comment, very calmly; “Would you eat your lunch in the bathroom?”

Point taken.

But aside from the disgust with breastfeeding I was taking from the article, I felt an overwhelming hatred of mothers.  Mothers who want to feed their babies in public.  Mothers who ask for discounts because they are mothers.  Damn you mothers for carrying children and bringing life.

The author also hates nutrition because her solution is for breastfeeding mothers to bring a bottle to feed their kids, obviously oblivious to the fact that a baby sucking on a bottle even once can ruin the latch on the nipple causing pain and agony for the mother – or a premature end to breastfeeding at worst.

If a mother is unable to pump enough breast milk to fill a bottle, I guess the mother can just buy some over-the-counter product and feed the baby that, right?  Who cares what garbage is in that bottle, so long as there are no breasts exposed, right?

Or maybe the author’s “final solution” is best.  Since she offended pretty much all moms everywhere by tagging her post “people I hate” and referring to either women or feminists in her university / college as “feminazis”, she finally concluded that moms with young children do not belong in nice restaurants when there are quality family restaurants like “McDonalds or Burger King” around.

Wow.

I would have commented to the author about her incorrect facts relating to the bottle comment and restaurant solutions in an understanding manner.  How else could she feel this way unless she just did not know.  It’s easy for her to send moms to McD’s, as her post screams about her lack of understanding of what it takes to be a mother and responsible for children while still trying to have a life of their own.  Heck, she referred to children who are breastfeeding – probably under 4-years-old – as  “bratty hellspawn” to think that mothers are only feeding their kids for “attention” pretty much rounds out the absurdity.

I had always thought that mothers fed their children out of necessity so the won’t die.  Funny how that works…

The “breast” solution for this author is to only go to restaurants where families do not “hang out”.

But with nowhere on her blog to add a comment and me left feeling that I have to educate this woman so she won’t go through life thinking that all breastfeeding mothers are Satan’s spawn, I came to post it here.

The link to the original post is below.

http://xoellexo.wordpress.com/2014/01/07/breastfeeding-motherslactivist-nightmares/