No We Are Not Down With The Sickness

Happy Thanksgiving to those who bleed red, white and blue today. How is the turkey so far? Based on the inflated stats on the blog that have to do with smoked meat, a lot of you are cooking outdoors. Sweet!

It seems the updates are decreasing over here, but that does not mean life is not happening.

This week’s battle is health. Both boys have been fighting various bugs and colds. Tis the season right?

For Katie and I, it was a cold taste of reality that we had forgotten about. Yep, late night coughing and crying fits.

It has been several months since we had to get up to comfort one of the boys.

So, no, we are not down with the sickness. We want it to go away.

Twice in the last week I have been up with Charlie as he leaks snot everywhere, just trying to get comfy to sleep. Guess where he seems to sleep best? If you guessed on me, you would be correct.

Now while that makes for a great sleep for the little guy, it lacks any comfort for me. Charlie is basically a 30 pounder laying on your chest all night.

Harry has some adult teeth on the move, so he has been waking up with a sore mouth and drool. Luckily for him, just the prospect of medicine calms him down and he goes back to bed.

We had forgotten about these nights. We had forgotten about the stress of just laying there waiting for one of them to wake up. We had forgotten about trying to go about the day feeling like ass because you were up all night.

Thanks sickness. You are not welcome. Please go elsewhere.

Monday was a sick day for both guys. It was one long day for all of us. But since, both boys have been powering through and going to school and daycare.

I had also forgotten how much it sucks listening to your son cough up a lung or just wishing he knew how to blow his own nose.

I am certainly not asking for sympathy. Parents do this every day and have cases that are MUCH worse. I am just laying out the facts.

Katie and I had to dust off our parenting skills and go back to listening for noises in the night and being at the ready for more than usual snuggles.

With my going back to work next week and both boys being around other kids who are sick all day, this is only the beginning no doubt.

I am off to stock the medicine cabinet for the next 4 am house call for dr. mom or dr. dad.

The Toronto Transition Is Now Complete

kidsonstree The Toronto Transition Is Now Complete

Has it been over six months already? Where did the time go since we left our house in Halifax, Nova Scotia, to move back to the big city of Toronto?

When you include kids, selling a house, packing four people’s lives up and everything else involved, the Toronto transition was easily the biggest change I have experienced.

Well thanks to a few events from the past week, I am happy to say, the transition is complete. The chapter is over. It’s time to move to the next act.

What events do I speak of?

Well it all started with Katie getting the job that started the whole move. Then getting the kids settled. Then finding somewhere to live.

See where this is going?

The only piece left was for me to find a job.

Thank You Readers

Wow time flies when you are having fun right? While fighting the battles of parenting this month, this blog crossed a pretty cool milestone. At almost two years to the day of launch, Like A Dad hit the 100,000 views mark.

pageviews Thank You Readers

I know Kim K’s ass gets that in an hour, but for this tiny parenting blog, I think it is an accomplishment.

That is why I want to send a quick thanks to all who read, land on, share and spread the good word  of this site.

I have so many stories to share and creative ideas to get out of my head, I am very happy to have this space to do it.

Again, thank you for your continued support.


Food For Thought. Our Kids Don’t Eat Much

harry pizza Food For Thought. Our Kids Dont Eat Much

Last night after going to bed, our oldest son got up and came out to announce he was starving. Yes, he did not say hungry, he used the word starving.

While this may have been an exaggeration, in his mind it was true.

Why was he so hungry? Well, like most nights lately, he did not eat dinner.

Food has been a struggle in our household. It went great when both our boys were babies as they ate pretty much anything.

But then the menu continued to shrink down to two or three foods.

Even the classics like pizza were getting destroyed for having sauce or melted cheese on it.

My wife and I have reached a point of having to choose between cooking food we like and dealing with the fall out, or just making the boring three things all the time.

Our youngest, who is two, has now also hopped on the bandwagon on not liking food. He in fact, really does not even like sitting at the table for dinner.

It is pretty rare that you can serve food, grab a drink and sit down before he pushes his plate forward and gets off his chair.

Before anyone says anything  under their breath, we have tried being firm on having to try everything and having to sit with us.

But eventually, it really is not worth the fight.

It is a power struggle plain and simple and I am not sure if we are winning or losing anymore.

We think, well they will eat when they are hungry. But then eating for us becomes about survival and not enjoyment.

I like sitting at the table with the family every night. Sure we don’t talk about much, but we are together. I bet there are thousands of families who wish they were so lucky.

Back to the eating. The boy’s taste pivot on a dime these days. It seems like the only sure thing is some kind of frozen and breaded piece of chicken.

Like I said, even kid-friendly classics like pizza and pasta no longer make the cut.

So what do we do? What do other parents do?

I ask around and it sounds like we are all in the same boat. It is rare to hear parents say their young kids eat well.

We take our kids grocery shopping, let them pick out stuff, let them learn what food is, let them help cook it and yet they seem to get no enjoyment out of eating.

Maybe we let up on the power struggle. Just stop focusing on it completely. If they eat, great. If not, just most on.

Even the lunches I pack for school don’t get eaten most days and those are made up of 100% things that our son picks out. He claims he forgets to eat it.

When it comes to parenting struggles, the food issue is easily at the top. So far, we have been pretty lucky with our boys. They are happy and socially well-behaved little dudes. They make us laugh, they have great compassion and they are a treat to spend time with.

But this food thing. It is a test of every bit of patience we have. We would love for it to stop, but I think that won’t happen any time soon.

Then you add the prospect of me going back to work, and quality food time is only going to diminish.

I have plenty of time to prepare a good meal for all right now. I can’t imagine what happens when dinner becomes a sprint to the finish each week night.

Is it partly our fault? I am sure of it. I am sure there was a tipping point where we caved on something and the kids assumed control.

But you do what you have to do to get through a meal.

I grew up in a household where you sat there until you ate it. That is how it used to be done for many. It was horrible. It solved little. But it was again, a power struggle that a parent could feel like they won.

I don’t want to see the boys sitting at the table for hours when there is life to be enjoyed. I want them to love having family dinners. I want them to love food, or at least new food.

I also feel like there is little left to try that has not already been tried. The “experts” advice always comes from people who seem to have perfect kids.

Our son asked if we could wash the sauce off his chili last night. See where we are?

This week’s strategy I think will be trying to reset and not focus on it so much. I hate making such a big deal out of lunch and dinner. I am sure it adds to stress, pressure and the fight to be the winner.

Easier said in the afternoon, when you are well rested and not staring down the screaming face of your kid who says he is hungry but does not like the colour of something that has been that colour for the history of time.

We are trying to stick to not cooking different dinners for different people. That is really the only thing we have not tried. It seems like it is a band-aid that will bite us in the ass later.

The bottom line is, it breaks my heart just a little when you hear your son tell you he is starving. Yes, he has the power to fix it by simply eating dinner, but at the same time all you want to do is give him the snack he wants, so he will be happy and go to bed. Full disclosure, we did give him a snack and he slept fine.

Wrong? Sure. But what are you going to do right?

Have a food story to share? Does your kid actually eat what you do every night? We would love to hear how you did that (and video proof).

The one thing I have come to learn from all of this, my parents did a good job because my sister and I were the exact same way.

Top 10 Toronto Shots Including My Kids

It’s a slow day on the home front, so I thought I would share some photos. Just this morning, a fan mentioned that I post some pretty good shots of Toronto on my Instagram page. Since they pretty much always have my kids in it, I decided to go through and pick 10 of my favourite.

Toronto is a great city to raise kids in. It is so busy and relaxing at the same time. You can pretty much do as much or as little as you want and it is rarely the same twice.

Where do you like to take your kids in Toronto?

Here are photos of my Top 10 Toronto shots including my kids.

Look Out Walls, Charlie Has Crayons

charlie wally Look Out Walls, Charlie Has Crayons

Oh how your mind can block things out. I had totally forgotten the age where kids love to draw on everything and anything. Harry had a phase of drawing on the wall and we survived. Now that Charlie is two, and has simple access to crayons, he has started his own form of tagging.

If you want to know where Charlie has been in our place, just follow the “art” on the walls, fridge, couch and even the floor.

Who can blame him. Markers, crayons and other art supplies are great when your mind is exploding with ideas.

Want to colour and the paper is not around? Just take a red crayon to the fridge. No worries. Dad will clean it up.

So look out walls, Charlie has crayons.

The cool part of this is it is great to see his interest in drawing showing up. Harry is now into doing colouring within the lines and doing actual drawings, so it is only natural that little brother wants to do the same.

Thanks to the handy Mr. Clean Magic Eraser, we can let our budding artist go crazy. Also, as the unit is a rental, we are not that concerned about markings here and there.

There is a giant white wall in the back of our place that I am going to prepare for this exact thing. Whether it be washable markers or paper on the wall, I want the space to be theirs to go crazy with colour.

Harry does a lot of cool art at school and I have started hanging it on the wall around my desk at home. I like to look at it and he gets a kick out of it being featured.

Do you like to draw with your kids?

Do you have a little “tagger” in the house?

Share your story with us on Facebook or start following Like A Dad on Instagram.




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