Which is Best For You? Stay-at-Home Parent vs Working Parent

Sophia more than two years ago, while I was a stay-at-home dad

Sophia more than three years ago, while I was a stay-at-home dad.

Jan 14th, 2011: The day I lost my previous job.

February 24th, 2011: The day Sophia was born. Also the day I became a stay-at-home dad.

The topic of stay-at-home parenting can be a hot-button issue. I realize that. Frankly, I don’t understand why it’s really anybody else’s business if you decide to stay at home and raise your kids or if you decide to work. I’ve seen this more between moms than between dads, but it can be downright brutal. Really, I just want discussion, respectful, of course, about the topic. Continue reading

Big Girl Bed or Bust? When’s the Right Time to Switch From a Crib

Big girl bed or crib for this little cuddle-monkey?

Big girl bed or crib for this little cuddle-monkey?

Two of the best parts of my days are when Sophia goes to sleep and when she wakes up in the morning. Every morning while I’m getting ready for work, she wakes up and I hear through her door “Daddy! Come HERE!!” over and over until I walk in to pick her up and out of her crib. At night, I generally carry her to bed, with her head laying on my shoulder. Followed by a hug and a kiss and down into the crib she goes. It’s those little moments that make life as a parent pretty great. But, we now face ourselves with the decision of whether it’s time for the crib to go and move to the toddler bed. Continue reading

Terrible Twos, I Think You Arrived A Little Early

If you’re like me, then when you had, or have, your first kid, you told yourself that the terrible twos would never arrive for your sweet, little baby. And, if you’re like me, you would have been dead wrong. Dead.Wrong. I thought there was more time. I thought it wouldn’t

I don't trust you, snow. Not.One.Bit.

I don’t trust you, snow. Not.One.Bit.

happen, until, ya know, Sophia actually hit two! Nope. They seem to have arrived a little bit early.

It’s not that she behaves badly, it’s just that the reactions, and of course, overreactions have gotten a little over-the-top. She’s also not a fan of listening when we tell her not to do something. Then again, Sarah tells me I don’t listen, but I usually don’t hear her tell me because, well, I’m not listening…
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Do You Wanna Play Repeat? No, Do YOU Wanna Play Repeat…?

What’ did you just say? Oh, well let me repeat that…

There comes a point in time when you have kids that you realize it’s time for you to really watch what you say. That point is NOW. When they say that kids are like a sponge and they soak up everything you say or do, they are correct (whoever “they” are, anyway). Having to watch what I say probably isn’t going to be an easy thing for me to do. I’m not gonna lie and say I don’t have a potty mouth. I do. Do I like the fact that I do? No, of course not. It’s a habit I’ve been trying to kick for a long time.  Continue reading

Bring back that Christmas-y feelin’, whoa, that Christmas-y feelin’

It’s crazy how Christmas can change for you as you get older. As a kid, Christmas is the

Sophia and I watching a special message from Santa

Sophia and I watching a special message from Santa

greatest day of the year, bar none. Even when you forget that you’re supposed to be grateful for the things you do get and not complain about what you don’t get (like an Eagles hat your brother got… only to get the same hat later in the day… I’ll never live that one down). As you get older, into your teens and then into your 20’s, Christmas is basically a chance for you to ask for all the latest technology devices, video games, sports equipment, and clothes. Something seems to be missing from Christmas when you hit those ages. At least for me it did.

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Words, Words, Words

“Do you understand the words that are coming outta my mouth?!” — Chris Tucker in Rush Hour

Learning to talk is a big deal. Heck, I’m 30 and I barely have a handle on the English

Sophia eating her ‘fren fwiiis’

language when I speak (and write…). So, needless to say, witnessing and helping Sophia learn to talk has been fun, awesome, entertaining, and sometimes, downright hilarious.

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A Daddy’s Poem

The birthday surprise poem

I wanted to do something special, something that nobody else could do, for Sophia’s first birthday. I’ve always considered myself somewhat of a poet (go ahead and laugh if you must), and thought one of the best things I could do would be to write Sophia a poem, from me, for her birthday. Yes, I know I wrote a letter from myself and Sarah, already, but this was a surprise from me that nobody, not even Sarah, knew was coming. You can see over there to the right, or above, wherever the picture loaded, what the final, framed piece looks like. I wanted to share it with all of you. Sophia owns my heart like no one else ever has and I wanted to share, what I think, is the greatest piece of writing I could ever pen. Enjoy! Continue reading

Nonsense Poopy Pants!

Before I jump into this enthralling, harrowing, and hero-building story, I will warn you: It involves poop. Lots and lots of poop. There will be other stuff too, so don’t leave. Stay. STAY! I said STAY HERE! That being said, time to dive right in.

As the parent of a baby, certain things are inevitable – crying, sleepless nights, throwing up, poopy pants – but enough about me! Joking aside (which clearly is something I know nothing about), you know when you become a parent to expect messes everywhere, anywhere, at any time, day or night. Babies don’t know they shouldn’t spit up all over your suit before a wedding, they don’t know they aren’t supposed to poop through their clothes. And why would they, THEY’RE BABIES! Needless to say, I’ve grown very accustom to quick wardrobe changes for Sophia when we are out in public thanks to those messes. At home, it isn’t nearly as difficult to get those messes and wardrobe changes taken care of quickly. This story involves just such a public mess and wardrobe change, unfortunately, Sophia wasn’t the only one in need of new clothes.

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Dad Reflections

It really is hard to believe, but it’s already been 4 months since Sophia graced us with her arrival. To say it has been a whirlwind 4 months would be an understatement. From the sleepless nights the first couple months home, to now seeing her personality start to come out, it has been amazing.

Going into Sarah’s pregnancy I was so scared, nervous and excited all at the same time. I had no idea what I was getting myself into, but what I did know was that my life would be changing forever. One of the funniest things that happened during Sarah’s pregnancy, aside from her pregnancy brain and pregnancy clumsiness… was the debate about what we’d be having, a boy or a girl. Naturally, as a man, I said we’d have a boy. Because, ya know, I gotta have someone to carry on my name and um, legacy?? The week we announced the news to our families we were away on vacation with Sarah’s family. While going back and forth on boy or girl I made a declarative statement that I can never take back and will forever live on in the form of a video on Sarah’s old phone. “We’re having a boy,” I stated. “I don’t make girls…” Yeah, I was THAT guy! When we found out we’d be having a girl at the 20-week ultrasound, that statement was thrown back in my face immediately. I’m sure that statement will one day make it to Sophia with her asking “What, Daddy, you didn’t want me to be a girl??” Followed by sad eyes… I’ll then have to tell her it was all a joke and that of course I wanted her and wanted her to be a girl. Pretty easy, right? On second thought, maybe I should find Sarah’s old phone and burn it AND the video proof… Continue reading

The Early Arrival

Sophia Marie Browne, born Feb. 24, 2011.

Now that the end of March is here and I can now consider myself a “veteran parent” of a month, it seems a good time to start updating this site again. I was all set and ready to write a post in late February about nesting. Not that Sarah was nesting as normal pregnant women do, but in her own, very special way. That is, making a list of things to do and handing it to me… Well, that intent came and went REAL quick on February 21. That’s the night our lives went from “preparing for two more weeks until our daughter arrives” to “well, guess our little lady is tired of waiting to come out and say hello!” Continue reading