Tag Archives: children

2 Beefs with Valentine’s Day and Children

by admin

I am not the greatest father.  Or the most diligent blogger.  Truth is, I am not quite as delinquent at updating this blog as you might think – I have about 5 drafts sitting unpublished in the background.  But it’s harder sometimes that you might think to get something out on paper (or on screen) that constitutes something to say, something that is worth talking about.

With Valentine’s Day upon us, fathers often get wrapped up in trying to express their feelings for their wives, the mother of their children.  My wife apparently got her gift early, in the form of jealous co-workers when she told them that I always say I dislike Valentine’s Day because it’s a cop-out for people to trim romance back to one day a year instead of celebrating their love for their significant other all year long.  No woman would care about Valentine’s Day if she was getting regular flowers, chocolates, back massages and daily passionate kisses. (Not that I achieve such lofty goals, but it’s the thought that counts… right?)

You give what in my name?

You give what in my name?

But all that is aside from the point I wanted to talk about today.  I want to talk about Valentine’s Day for children.  Because a long time ago it was decided that children need to celebrate this day too.  Early indoctrination to one of the foremost Hallmark holidays of the year?  I don’t know.  What I do know is at least as long as I have been alive, schools have encouraged and supported the idea of kids bringing Valentine’s Day cards to school and distributing them. Kids as young as 5.  I never went to preschool so maybe preschoolers do it too… but I know even as a very young child I would make out little cards with each student’s name on them, and hand them out at school on or about Valentine’s Day.

PS.  If you’re new here and you like what you read, you can subscribe to the blog with an RSS reader, or for even more fun, go like our Facebook page!  I drop little tidbits and tips on there more regularly than even here (but I save my long form goodness for this page!)

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6 Kids: You Know What Causes That?

by admin

Since pretty much our 3rd kid, when someone discovers how many children we have, a good chunk of the time the question gets asked, “Why?”  Often it is presented in a more joky fashion – like, “Do you know what causes that?” or “They have solutions for that, you know.”  I haven’t always had the best answer for it.. my answer tends to be on the long-winded side – we both love kids, and we both love each other, and we don’t like watching TV much so…

The biggest and the smallestBut seriously, it never crossed our minds to have an abortion, and hormonal birth control was messing with my wife’s body too much to stick with.  Nerfing sex drives kind of defeats the purpose of birth control doesn’t it?  So, other methods were employed.  Twice those methods failed us – resulting in 3 of our 6.  Three times, we chose to set them aside.  And to be perfectly clear, the two times they didn’t work, we weren’t upset – things just happened sooner than we expected or planned for.  Our last were twins, but we were thinking of having another 2 or 3 years down the road anyway, so it just bumped up our plans.

But you came here for something amusing – and I want to share it!  I ran across a blog with 5 kids, and there was this post about why they have as many as they do.  The Dad had a great perspective – “I don’t have to convince you of my politics or religion.  I just have to outnumber you.”  I love that – it speaks of deliberation, and thinking of the future.  I can’t say we stepped into having 6 with such forethought.

But the comments – oh the comments!  They were rich with pithy one liners to respond with!  If you need an answer to some snide, “You know what causes that?” – here you go!

  • (female response) “Well behaved children and an irresistible husband!”
  • (male response) “Good kids and a HOTT wife!”
  • “We’re pretty sure, but more testing is required.”
  • “We’ve narrowed it down to water or sex, and we aren’t giving up either one!”
  • “I handle my business, and God handles his.”
  • “Yep, and we’ve got the trophies to prove it right here!”

If you’ve got a good response to that question, please add it in the comments!  I’d love to grow the list!

My View on Fatherhood Part 3: Father of 6

by admin

Here’s more on the unique perspective you will get here at Fathering From Home.  Not only am I a stay-at-home Dad and a father of exclusively boys, but I am the father of 6.

And we took them all to Disney... once.

And we took them all to Disney… once.

Honestly, in North America in 2013, being the father of 6 is practically a scarlet letter.  To the granola crowd I am personally contributing to the overpopulation of the earth.   To the childless-by-choice crowd (which seems to be growing all the time) I am a breeder, lacking the self-control or intelligence to limit my brood to a size that enables me to be self-actualized through 80 hour work weeks or through gobs of travel and expensive experiences.  To those who actually choose to have kids I am clinically insane, because “I can barely handle my 1 (or 2 at the most)”.  I get stared at when I take them all out – shopping or otherwise.  My family’s chariot, a 2005 Chevy Express 15 passenger van got labelled an “Indian van” while we were in Surrey (not by us – sadly there is racism in Canada too), because only the Punjabi population, where extended families all live together and work together use them.  Then we moved to Southern Alberta, where our van was relabelled the “Hutterite Van” because only the communally farming Hutterites used them for personal transport in this area.  To think of such a vehicle as a “family van” is beyond the imaginings of most people in this day and age.

How did we wind up with 6 kids?  By the way, when we had our fourth, the “Are you trying to be the Duggars” comments started, so you can imagine the comments and backhanded compliments we get now.  Firstly, no, we are not Mormon or Catholic.  And no, we don’t have religious reasons for having so many kids… unless you consider it a religious reason that we would NEVER EVER consider an abortion for an unplanned pregnancy.

We love our kids.  From the moment we discovered we were pregnant with each one (or two) we have celebrated.  I LOVE infants.  I LOVE my wife when she is pregnant – she is beautiful and incredibly hot when she is in full bloom.  I don’t know what it is – maybe part of it is how secure it makes me feel in her heart that she is bearing another child for me.  Maybe it is the shot of testosterone that my virility is once more proven.  I don’t know.  But I love everyone’s infants too.  Holding infants is one of the most peaceful experiences in life, and I am glad I have gotten to do it as much as I have.

We never set out to have 6.  In fact, after we got married and began discussing seriously how many kids we would have, she wanted 2 and I wanted 3.  We never thought that we would add them together (and throw in a pair of twins)! Read the rest of this entry »

My Son: Award Winning Artist

by admin

An odd thing happened last winter.

Award winning artwork

Award winning artwork

My 4 year old son, attempting a precocious Kindergarten year, drew a picture.  The teacher asked him to draw a cowboy.  So he did.  It wasn’t spectacular.  Even he didn’t think so.  But he got a lot of detail into it.  In fact, there is quite a lot there on close observation.

For example, the odd tiny head and thin arms accompanied by large hands and legs and feet are a matter of perspective.  If a 5 year old met a cowboy, this is what he would see: large hands, legs and feet because they are close to him, largely hidden arms, and a tiny head way up in the clouds.

He took pains to add in the classic cowboy features of hat and boots, but what you may not notice is the green cord wrapped in loops at his side – that is his lasso.

It’s a neat bit of drawing, and may even be good for his age.  It might have been good enough to be one of the pieces we actually save of his artwork (any other parents out there get absolutely sick to death of schools sending home every single thing our kids glue, cut, rip, paint, or write on?  I mean, how many forests have to die?)

But much to our surprise, it was submitted to the city art gallery for an annual exhibition of art produced by students.

Much to our greater surprise, it was chosen as the gallery centerpiece, and the winner of best student artwork in the city.

Don’t get me wrong: I am proud of the work he did.  But never in a million years would I have thought to submit this work to an art competition.  Never in a million years would I expect him to win.

Maybe I just don’t grasp the fine sensitivities of the art community, who it seems since abstract art came into vogue, seem to revel in objects that at best resemble their subjects superficially, and search for hidden meaning in the artist’s “choice of medium” and “bold decisions” in how to “capture the essence” of the subject.  Maybe this work is brilliant.

We asked him about the piece.  Here’s the “artist’s interview.

Tips for Doing Disney with a Big Family

by admin
The 6 boys at Disney

The crew at Disneyland summer 2012 – I was holding the camera.

Penniless Parenting had a guest post with some money-saving tips for going to Disney on the cheap.  They were great, but I don’t know if they addressed the larger family very well.  We’ve been to Disneyland twice as a family and Disney World once, and our oldest is 12.  Frankly even writing that makes me feel like I have been either incredibly lucky or we have been incredibly rich… and if you saw my bank account today you wouldn’t conclude that last.  How did we do it?  Well, first, read “Tips for Disney Holidays on a Budget” then come back here.

Keep reading below the video if you want all the gritty details.

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