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men who change diapers change the world

Tuesday, 27 February 2007
This is what happens when you get too close to an oven fan.

Check out these annoying noises this collection of six gentle, expertly recorded "white noise" sounds.

1. Listen  Clothes Dryer Hum

2. Listen  Hair Dryer Whistle
3. Listen  Washing Machine Purr
4. Listen  Vacuum Cleaner Waltz
5. Listen  Washer and Dryer Combo Special
6. Listen  White Noise Plain Wrap


And that's what happens when this at-home dad from California got a little too close to his oven fan. If you don't want to spend the $14.95 you may download my son's version for free.

Posted by athomedad at 10:59 AM EST
Updated: Tuesday, 27 February 2007 11:15 AM EST
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Monday, 26 February 2007
Why do sexy dads get all the chicks? (rats!)
At New Page 1

Well we've seen that monkeys can be at-home dads, but  how many other male animal species can make the same claim? A quick look in YouTube  uncovered this male rat experimenting with the primary care-giver role. I began an afternoon search for the hardest working animal dad, so I looked for more research and researched that research and the Oscar for hardest working male species goes to.... The Emperor Penguin. And by a landslide. And its not because they were last years Oscar winner for best documentary, or that they were chosen to be the mascot for the  North East Wisconsin At-Home Dads. It's because after the female penguin lays her egg she hands it off to dad and takes off shopping for more food.... 2 months later she comes back, but not before dad (with the egg balanced on his feet the whole time) freezes and starves half to death. 

Below are the 4 runner ups:

1. The Seahorse Dad  - Tennessee Aquarium's curator of fishes says the male gets the eggs from mom and carries them to term. Dad isn't technically pregnant but he's got them 'em in his pouch till they are born.. These guys really got cheated out of the award. 

2. The Reah (Big Bird) Dad - (The largest bird from South America.) When the Reah mom hatches her eggs she shacks up with other Reah dads while the biological dad takes over and attacks anyone, (even the mom) who comes near the eggs.   (He beat out the Cassowary Bird Dad, from Australia who sits on the eggs for a few months then does the child care for the first nine months. not bad.)

 3. The Sand Goby Dad (a small fish from the British coast) - Nothing to be proud of here really. This research from the  University of Florida - (2004) shows that when the females are watching and double-checking everything like wives usually do, the dads will protect the eggs, but when mom isn't around the house,  dad tends to eat them. The researchers note "being a good [Sand Goby] father is very sexy. This is almost a cliche, as it has become a standard joke that the best way to get women to be interested in you as a single guy is to borrow a baby or a puppy. Women obviously find ‘caring guys’ very sexy". 

4. Lions, bears, prairie dogs, orcas, gray whales, and sheep (tie). - If you have read this far, these animals and more are explored in  Jeffrey Masson's amazing, extensive (and certainly more legitimate then mine)  research of other research in his book, The Emperor's Embrace: Reflections on Animal Families and Fatherhood


The Barking Frog Dad Fraud  - The Barking Frog dad was getting credit for guarding the "egg clutch" which stemmed from 1950's research but it was disqualified for a nomination because the Tucson Herpetological Society put the myths to rest with their own studies stating " our radio-tracking data from Arizona suggests that males move too frequently to guard eggs and that females may stay with the clutch (Goldberg and Schwalbe, 2000)."

Posted by athomedad at 4:10 PM EST
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Friday, 23 February 2007
Even Monkeys not Exempt from Mr Mom Label

While cruising for stories  I came across this headline from the Baltimore Sun: In primate colony, titi monkey dads take on the role of Mr. Mom I can't interview these monkeys on what they thought of the headline but the story is worth mentioning. Seems that the folks at the California National Primate Research Center  found that mom monkeys are pretty rough on their kids and dad is more than happy to take over. In the story UC Davis psychology professor  Karen Bales, says,  In most monogamous species, the dads are really good. It's just taken to an extreme in titi monkeys because the moms are kind of bad, sometimes  you watch a titi monkey mom and you feel like she doesn't like her babies." Titi babies tend to ride draped across a parent's shoulders, and when mom wants the kid off her back, her favorite strategy for shifting responsibility [to dad]  is to make the baby cry.   

A new Digg for Dads  - Don Leister of fame has turned his main page into sort of a  Digg for Dads. He's done great with his dads forum, and with the dads site clogging the blogosphere It's a great idea.  If you would like to submit your blog send him a line with your feed.

Posted by athomedad at 12:13 PM EST
Updated: Friday, 23 February 2007 6:42 PM EST
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Wednesday, 21 February 2007
Mannys (slowly) invade America (thank you Britney Spears!)

 An alert reader, found this excellent piece in the Daily Telegraph by British reporter Sarah Ebner on male nannies or mannys.  She interviews Holly Peterson's for her book The Manny due for American release in a few months. Peterson (who has 3 children) notes "Boys play differently to women, the nanny is more of a comforter, while the manny is a 'throw me across the room' kind of guy. They fool around, play football and are happy to run around and around the park.''  Of course we knew this all along, in an old At-Home Dad Newsletter article I wrote 10 years ago  daycare daddy John Wise said "The only structure around here is snack, nap and lunch time." Wise calls it the "rhythm method". "Why would you want to break that rhythm by forcing another activity when everything is fine. If things are running smoothly we will continue with it as long as the kids are enjoying it." 2 other day care daddies I interviewed for the same story had a similar "let the kids run around" style.  

We can thank Britney Spears (and her Fed-ex) for sticking this whole manny issue into the limelight last year,  but an  interesting stat may reflect the true public opionion. In an online survey from a Tinies Nanny Agency quiz it was revealed that four fifths of mothers would feel threatened by a female nanny, but only half of the dads felt the same threat. 

Posting on the manny story in the message board last week "Carlos" wrote:

 "Careers have been more important for a long time.. take a look at the before school program that includes breakfast.  or the after school "latch key" programs.  it seems that most of America would rather "farm out" time with their kids.  The saddest part is that most of the time the second parent is working and earns just enough to pay for the new cars in the driveway, and day care expenses.  I even know a few stay at home parents that send their kids to day care 5 days a week....(so they can have a break)....does that qualify as a stay a home parent?  or is it skipping out on the kids and perusing laziness as a career?     I think it's about time that The "Manny" gets some attention. I'm waiting for the debut of "Super Manny"....

Posted by athomedad at 3:19 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, 22 February 2007 9:14 AM EST
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Monday, 19 February 2007
James Dobson rings Kyle Pruett's doorbell and runs away.
Topic: Kyle Pruett

Sorry for the 2nd Pruett video in a row but the popular At-Home Dad Convention keynote speaker had to give a little spanking to patriarchal marriage crusader James Dobson for "cherry-picking" his research. Looks like he grabbed a sentence from Pruett's  Fatherneed book to make a point in a Time Op ed piece titled Two Mommies is One Two Many.  Jim Burroway of the Turtle Box Bulletin does a great job of reporting the dirty details here. The whole mess was discovered by Wayne Besen, of the watchdog group Truth Wins Out who was the first to inform Pruett of  Dobson's bad behavior. So far Dobson is not responding to Pruett's effects to contact him.

Posted by athomedad at 2:29 PM EST
Updated: Monday, 19 February 2007 10:03 PM EST
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Friday, 16 February 2007
The earliest at-home dad TV interview ever?


Check out this vintage 1983 TV clip of Hour Magazine that was just stuck on youtube. You got host Gary Collins  interviewing the relatively young Kyle Pruett and a dad who Collins giddily exclaims is a real life Mr Mom!  What's interesting about this kids glove interview is that Collins describes it as a "relatively new phenomenon"  How did they know this? Well I am guessing they got their proof due to the the hot movie Mr Mom which was was coincidently released that year. 

Playground News Update -  I've added 2 more entries to the playgroup list... first, Brian Russell of Oregon noticed  there wasn't a single dad's group in the state, so he decided to be the first one. If you live in or near Portland, get in touch. Second If you live down-under check out the Aussie Dads from Australia.

Posted by athomedad at 1:38 PM EST
Updated: Friday, 16 February 2007 10:47 PM EST
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Thursday, 15 February 2007
Caught dumpster diving at NBC.

   I hated it, Rebeldad hated it, but NBC's terrible Meet Mr Mom TV series was snatched out of NBC's dumpster after rotting for almost 2 years by the Internet video-on-demand firm Akimbo. The 2005 show is poised to air on their web TV site to make a few bucks. You will do better with Japan's effort titled "At-Home Dad" which actually ran longer.... it's even available on eBay now if you can translate the language.


Posted by athomedad at 2:15 PM EST
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Monday, 12 February 2007
Zero Boss need not apply

The Chicken Soup for the Soul people are looking for some at home dad fodder for their next book, Chicken Soup for the Father and Son.  They want inspirational, true stories, 1000 words or less, that will make readers laugh, cry, jump for joy, find peace, or just say "wow." Stories should be positive, universal, and non-controversial. The "message" should be evident without preaching. No essays, tributes, letters, philosophical or biographical pieces will be accepted.  This pretty much eliminates an entry from the fabulous Jay Allen of  Zero Boss, so if your style is closer to his, go this route..

Posted by athomedad at 8:07 AM EST
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Friday, 9 February 2007
Hunting for Invisible Playgroups
Topic: Playgroup News

A huge thank you to Bruce of Seattle Dads for going though the playgroup list I have maintained since the mid 90's. When I had the hardcopy version of the At-Home Dad Newsletter, I listed over 300 individual dads looking to start up groups which needed to be maintained heavily. Eventually due to the transitional nature of the at-home dad and my laziness they would disappear leaving a deadly trail of non-responding links.  Bruce painstakingly  tracked down every link from my list and other dad sites and listed the established ones here.    He's offered to share his database so if you want in on the action send him an e-mail and be nice to him. Due to his efforts I've cleaned up my list, which I will promise I will maintain. I'll still continue to include individual dads who are looking to start a group as well as the larger groups.




Posted by athomedad at 2:55 PM EST
Updated: Monday, 12 February 2007 7:47 AM EST
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Thursday, 1 February 2007
You Drunk Girl!
At New Page 1

When the media "discovered" at-home dads back in the early 90's  we squirmed through a series of pieces comparing us to the Mr. Mom movie, the media just lapped it up and drooled for more. As the skepticism of dads parenting skills gave way to praise, the stories slowly dissolved to syrupy father's day pieces to fill the producers quota during the Father's Day Holiday season. The Today Show's last gasp of at-home dad playgroups  featured the Seattle At-Home Dads last May and they treated me with kid's gloves.  Now that we've been beaten up, sweet talked and forgiven, they showed us what it would take to feature an at-home moms playgroup....a glass of wine.   Armed with the Oprah-sanctioned Dr Janet Taylor and  Meredith View Viera, they ganged up on mommy blogger Melissa Summers of Suburban Bliss because they found out some mommy groups threw in a bottle of wine in their diaper bag.  The segment created a Mooninite-like blog buzz on dozens of mommy blogs and a few daddy ones.  Funny thing.....the Aqua Teen Hunger Force "hoax", didn't scare New York City  where the Today show is aired, but a mom with a glass of wine in her hand gets transformed into a scary piece titled  Happy Hour for Moms.   It's a mom drinking a glass of wine!! Get over it!! . Now get yourself a can of beer and check out  Melissa's take on the whole stupid thing.




Posted by athomedad at 9:40 AM EST
Updated: Saturday, 10 February 2007 4:22 PM EST
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