Thanks Mo, it’s been a fun ride

652. The number 652 is a special number. A number that represents baseball history. A number that will probably never be surpassed. 652 is the number of times Yankees closer Mariano Rivera saved a game. His career has come to an end. As a fan of baseball and the Yankees, I can only say thanks Mo.

I grew up watching the “Core Four;” Rivera, Jorge Posada, Andy Pettitte, and Derek Jeter. To see these players retire is bittersweet. I finally understand how previous generations felt when the baseball stars of their childhood called it quits. Yes, we still have Jeter, but the Yankees are not, and won’t be the same.

Mariano Rivera

Mariano Rivera (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Rivera is a true great of the game. The farewell ceremonies, gifts from other teams and most importantly, the respect from baseball fans around the country are a true testament. Baseball fans are hard-pressed to find a current star, in any sport, that matches Rivera’s professionalism and class.

If my son were to have a sports role model, or “hero,” I would hope it would be Rivera.

In five years, I hope to be in Cooperstown celebrating the induction of Mariano Rivera. I’ll bring my son of course and tell him about watching all the championships and the coolness which Rivera went about his work.

Enjoy retirement Mo.

I hope you enjoyed this post. All comments and feedback are welcome and encouraged!


A Top 5 for Sunday Morning: The ideal day versus reality

Sunday’s are interesting days. Sometimes they are filled with relaxation and football. Some of us worship in our respective ways. Others spend the day with family around a table eating. Still others need the time to mow the lawn and do all the things they didn’t get to during the week.

I started thinking about what I do on Sundays. Sometimes I end up doing basically what I don’t want to be doing. So what are five things I think most dad’s ideal Sunday would be:

  1. Watching football, baseball or golf.
  2. Eating.
  3. Not doing yard work.
  4. Sleeping past 7 am.
  5. Checking the football schedule for next Sunday.

The items above make a great plan. Below are the five things that will actually happen today:

  1. Watch cartoons to keep the little one happy.
  2. Hopefully eat lunch sometime between 12 pm and 2 pm.
  3. Mow the lawn.
  4. I was up at 6:30 am.
  5. There is no point in checking next Sunday’s NFL schedule.

Enjoy your Sunday!

I hope you enjoyed this post. All comments and feedback are welcome and encouraged!

Time to start a family tradition with football

The new NFL logo went into use at the 2008 draft.

The new NFL logo went into use at the 2008 draft. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m a baseball fan. But I’m also a football fan. College Football or the NFL, it doesn’t matter. On any given Saturday, the sounds of a college game can be heard in my house. On Sunday, we plan around the New York Football Giants. In fact, I’m looking forward to 4:25 Eastern today.

Watching football is a tradition in my house. Last year, our little guy wasn’t into the television. He was just discovering he had hands. But this year, it’s a little different. When he sees the game, he fixates on the movement and the sounds.

This is great for me, because I now have an excuse to watch football. Sorry mommy.

My hope, as Little A grows older, is for us to watch football together. I’m not sure if I want the little one to actually play football. The concerns surrounding concussions and other potential injuries weighs on me. At the very least, I hope we enjoy watching games.

This football season I hope to start the tradition. Something father and son can share and remember as he gets older. Unless of course he likes the Jets.

I hope you enjoyed this post. Comments and feedback are welcome and encouraged!

How Star Wars Teaches Fatherhood: A Sunday Morning Musing

Star Wars is one of my all-time favorite movies. Actually, the trilogy is phenomenal. Aside from the Light Sabres, Death Star, and Chewbacca, Star Wars teaches two good lessons in parenting.

A Sibling Rivalry? Not So Much

The first lesson is to never underestimate the power of siblings. Luke and Lea ultimately discovered their familial link with a little help from the Force. If my wife and I have a second child, we will be aware of the possibility of the children joining forces against us. Especially if they want a dog.

Luke, I am your father

The classic line symbolizes more than Vader’s attempt to sway Skywalker to the Dark Side. The Sith Lord‘s admission is an expression of love for his son. Vader you old softy. If we think about what happens in the story, Vader becomes the undoing of the Emperor to save Luke.

This is our second lesson: that is what dad’s do, we protect our kids. Father’s take note, just because you may possess the ability to use the Force to your advantage, your kids are your kids.

These are simple and obvious lessons, but for me, that is the beauty of the Star Wars story. Regardless of time and space, and galaxies, family is family. No Death Star can put a stop to that.

Thank you for reading. Comments and feedback are always welcome and encouraged.


Life After the Inflatable Pool: A Sunday Morning Musing

In my last post, Life In the Inflatable Family pool, my wife and I learned life is different now that we are older. After Little A didn’t want anything to do with the pool, it was time to deflate and pack away for this year.

It is with sadness I report in the end, the pool ended up in the garbage.

Inflatable pools are filled with air, not water. What do I mean? As we went to lift the pool to drain the water, we found it harder to move than expected. Somehow, water filled the two bottom inflatable rings. This was only learned after much aggravation, ( and a frustrated daddy Kung-Fu kick to an inflatable ring). Oh, and mommy seeing the water.

If you’ve tried to move the Blob before, you understand our difficulty.

The End

Ultimately, I had to slice the two rings open to expel the water. I was disappointed at the thought of cutting the pool. I’m not sure what it symbolized to me subconsciously. Maybe a failing in my parenting abilities? I digress.

Little A of course, wasn’t phased by the situation. In fact, I think he’s secretly pleased. Mommy was more frustrated at my Bruce Lee impersonation. I’m just glad I can re-grow the grass that started to burn underneath the pool.

In the end, life moves on. So the lesson we learned while sitting in the pool holds true. Enjoy the little moments and be weary of inflatable pools.

I hope you enjoyed this post. As always comments are welcome and encouraged!

The Top 5 Beverages For Dads

Parents will tell you, there are things you need to do to get through some days with the little ones. Nutrition is also important regardless of one’s station in life. Various beverages can provide nutritional value. Combining these two needs results in more daddy’s needs for daily survival.

Alcoholic beverages

Alcoholic beverages (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So I compiled a list of my top five beverages every dad should have on his menu:

  1. Coffee
  2. Water
  3. Green tea
  4. Red Wine
  5. Beer

The coffee and water are self-explanatory. Green tea not only tastes good, but is rich with anti-oxidants. From what I read, those are good things. As a man who was 103 told me, the red wine is good for your ticker. Who am I to argue.

A note about the beer: you don’t need to consume daily. This is more a delicacy than necessity best consumed after the little ones go to bed. Also, if you are having a glass of wine, skip the beer.

Top 10 Lessons Parents Can Teach Their Kids Using A-Rod: A Sunday Morning Musing

I’m a baseball fan and a Yankee fan at that. However, I’m truly exhausted by the saga that is Alex Rodriguez. I need not go into more details or rant about my personal thoughts on the subject. Instead, I thought about how this relates to fatherhood and parenting in general.

The answer is rather simple, the entire situation is a great way to explain some important life lessons. So here is a list of the top ten things a parent can teach their kids using Alex Rodriguez:

  1. No matter how far you can hit a fastball, bad behavior will always catch-up to you.
  2. Anyone tells you to stick a needle in any part of you, and their name is not followed by M.D., seriously question what you’re about to do.
  3. Sports are just entertainment. There are significantly more important things in life.
  4. Get over yourself. Each of us has the potential to do great things, but that doesn’t make us better or more important than everyone else.
  5. Don’t lie. Once you lie, you can never stop. See item #1 above.
  6. Be grateful to those who employ you. For their generosity provides for your life.
  7. If you truly don’t like who or what employs you, leave.
  8. The world isn’t always nice, get used to it.
  9. Some days you will wish you could go back to kindergarten, that’s a normal feeling.
  10. Don’t be Alex Rodriguez.

How To Watch A Movie On Netflix With a One-Year-Old

Image representing Netflix as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

How do you watch a movie on Netflix with a one-year-old? You don’t really. At least not one that you want to actually watch. I will use my wife as an example. Sorry honey.

The other day, my wife queued up Playing for Keeps with Gerard Butler and Jessica Biel. Dennis Quaid was there too. Back to my story, the run time for the movie is 1 hour and 45 minutes. I believe she finished watching the film in 3 hours.

The hope was to view the film, in its entirety, while Little A napped. Unfortunately, Little A knew mommy wanted to do something for herself. Little A would go to his crib, stay quiet for a short time, then up again. The beauty of Netflix is you can stop and restart as often as you like.

Approximately five interruptions (I stopped counting after three), and my wife finished the movie. This is a note to all you new parents and expecting ones, enjoy your own time now. It’s not all bad, you will come to realize the time spent with your kids is far more valuable than catching up on your television shows or even reading a book. You’ll have plenty of time for those things later.

As for the movie Playing for Keeps, I asked my wife and she was just glad we didn’t pay actuall dollars to go see it.

Humor In the House: A Sunday Morning Musing

Laughter is the best medicine. We’ve all heard this before. I promised myself when I started writing The Evolving Dad I was going to have as much humor in the blog as possible. Well, as with any journey, I’ve touched on many topics, many of which not so funny.

But I’m fortunate to live in a home with much laughter and humor. Having a one-year-old supplies most of the material. For example, we prefer Little A stay out of the kitchen. Who knows what’s living on that floor despite our best cleaning efforts. The way from the living room to the kitchen is an odd angle for an inexpensive (I’m frugal, not cheap)baby gate. So we blocked the path with diaper boxes. Do you think this stopped the little guy?

After pulling himself up and surveying the land beyond the boxes, he sat down, grabbed the corner of the box and pulled. Eventually he got his way. As he smiled at his amused and frustrated parents from kitchen land, we realized at least he can problem solve.

Here we were, two adults, educated, and taking our parenting abilities seriously. Only, Little A was able to outsmart us. Master’s degrees be damned.

I won’t admit this to the wife, but it’s rather entertaining watching the little one discover new ways to get around. I guess that’s the joy in all this. The best of all, is that grin he gives. He can’t say it, but that look speaks a thousand words. I got you daddy, try again.

At least I can laugh about it.

Stuff and Parenting: Just Let Go

Let go of your stuff. Physical stuff, emotional stuff, just stuff. Sounds easy right? I know from personal experience, that getting rid of my “stuff” isn’t easy. But, once you truly let go, you will amaze yourself. Imagine just how much better you will feel. Here are few thoughts on what you can let go of, at no cost to you:

The Physical Things:

  1. Clean your house by getting rid of junk and items you don’t use.
  2. De-clutter your spaces. At work, at home, the yard, your car, you get the idea.
  3. Go for a walk. Especially with the family.
  4. Build or create something.
  5. Sit, relax, and think.

The Emotional Things:

  1. Stop the negativity. Things are not that bad.
  2. Surround yourself with positive people.
  3. Set goals, whatever they may be.
  4. Laugh.
  5. Last, most importantly, spend time with your family.

I’m sure I can add to these lists, and probably will in future posts. Letting go of life’s baggage is healthy in so many ways. It’s not easy, but develop a routine. Not to mention, you will teach your children how to live healthier, happier lives too. What could be better for a parent?