Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Just another story about my life as a Dance Dad.......

This past weekend two of my girls participated in the local drive for St. Jude's Telethon. Every year their dance studio showcases ten or so routines from the competition teams. Usually I am a spectator/baby wrangler. This year I traded the wrangling for full Dance Dad Duties. Traded, more like the other parental unit was away on business and it needed to be done. No biggie; been there, done that.

We arrived early which turned out to work in our favor. I was able to get into our dressing room, more like make our dressing room (because you can't have a gaggle of pre-teen and teen girls changing all willy-nilly) and calmly rock some hair buns and set up the wardrobe/changing area for the cutest dancers ever. Really I had to make as easy as possible to not screw up their costumes because, as a male I am not allowed where girls are changing.

The younger one had her hair done before we left the house but needed to be touched up. She isn't the most reserved child. It's hard to be reserved when your preferred mode of transportation is cartwheel. You can imagine how even the toughest gel finds itself useless to her onslaught of inverted movement. Since the makeshift dressing room was now occupied, I asked for some gel and bobby pins from the bag. With my back pack full of snacks, with water bottles dangling like I was about to set off on a safari across the Sahara, I proceeded to attempt to get each and every stray hair stage ready.

While being an amateur hairstylist, I noticed another father watching with a grin. Not a malicious grin; more like a "You're doing a good job, man," grin. Or he was totally thinking to himself, "I'd hate to be that guy. Poor S.O.B." I'm betting it was the former. That's when it hit me. I'm doing a good job. I have three girls, all in dance. I am doing what I need to for them. I am doing what a father does for his kids. Isn't that what we are supposed to do? 

There is no way to transition to my final thought so here it is.  If you are a woman or a man (so basically if you have two legs and walk upright) you should stand up for each other EVERY DAY no matter gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic standing, shoe size or hair color. We are all equal. On International Women Day, step in and show your support for the women in your life. Stand up to any injustices you see. We are all the same. Not one of us is better than the other. Once we figure they out, things will fall into place. But if we continue the way we are, "IT" is going to hit the fan. And when things hit fans, things spray into a messy "IT"storm. I have way too much to clean up around here to be cleaning that up too.

*I stole, or repurposed most of the last paragraph from my Facebook post. 

Friday, January 27, 2017

Undermining Gender stereotypes - Ish

It has been some time since I have written, let alone done anything on this blog. I assure you I have not been abducted and forced into hard labor (oh, wait! I am a stay-at-home dad; this is hard labor!).

To bring you up to speed, the kids are great. Fourth grade (Wait. What?  Fourth? Grade?) First Grade (WTH? When did this happen?) and almost three (Wasn't she born last week?). And they are dancing.




Three kids in dance. Two on competition teams. (I need to lie down. It packs quite a punch when I put it in writing.)

I'm better now (I hope; >*deep breaths, deep breaths*<). Things have been going along nicely around here. The older girls enjoy being sisters (translation: at each other's throats constantly for no other reason than it is something to do) and the littlest is coming into her own as the perfect mix of the other offspring with a healthy dose of antagonizing little sister. Life as normal with three girls under one roof.

My life as a stay-at-home dad is pretty normal. I do laundry, vacuum, cook meals, clean and tidy up the house, transportation to and from dance, and wash dishes. A lot of dishes. Sure, we do have a dishwasher, but there are things that aren't supposed to go into that time saving device. Sure, they probably could go in, but they will last longer if they don't. Things like pots and pans, stainless utensils, and delicate antiquities. Then there are the things that are used every day; such as specific plates that SHOULD be used (not that they must be served on them, its just easier for my mental well-being if they are, and that needs all the help it can get). Add to that the commonly used cooking and serving utensils and my butt is parked at the sink at least three times a day for what seems like hours on end. With all this quality time the sink and I spend together, my hands feel the brunt of it. Add to that potty training a toddler and keeping the various colds and nastiness that come home from school at bay, my hands are constantly wet. They get beat up; especially in the colder months. Right around the time the days grow shorter and the air gets chillier, my hands start to crack. And I have yet to find a suitable hand cream that is worthy of my manliness (or lack thereof) and keeps my hands soft for the ladies....😉

Like I said, I've tried lotions. Arm & Hammer had a good one, but it only works for a little while; and I'm not going to be putting lotion on every time I wash my hands. I'd need 55 gallon drums just to get through the month. As for the rest, the results are barely worth writing about. So I have set out on a quest to find the best gloves for dishwashing. And there are so many out there. Latex, spandex, rubber, non-latex, lined, unlined, wool, plastic, chainlink, and so on. I've tried them all. (well maybe not the last few. It just flowed and I'm going with it). I've gotten them at the grocery store. I've gotten them at the home improvement store. And the best I can say, there is a market for larger, masculine dish washing gloves. If you have a hook up or the where-with-all, you can make a buck. The ones that come from the home improvement stores look masculine in that they are black or grey and a little more rugged. But they are not as good as the dedicated cleaning gloves one finds in the cleaning isle at the grocery store. The good ones, in my opinion and experience, are non-latex and felt lined. The only non essential  drawback are the color choices; which have not stopped me from brandishing my lovely pastel protection complete the never ending cascade of dirty dinnerware.

I am seeing if any of my loyal readers know of a quality glove that is sturdy, non latex, lined, AND in a cool color. Flames would be nice. Skull and cross bones. Or even a primary color. I'm sick of looking at my light purple covered hands for hours on end.

My wife got me this shirt for Christmas and ever since I have been brainstorming this post. Today I wore it to the library group we go to. I noticed a few reading it and looking a tiny bit longer than normal. It may have been the cute kid with me. Or the shirt. Probably the kid; she is pretty darn cute. Anyhoo I decided I needed to actually write it instead of thinking about writing it and this was the inspiration.

I do not own this design. It's on a T-shirt.