Monthly Archives: May 2016

The Importance of Creating Memories With Your Kids – Dudes To Dads Ep 65

Time is the most important thing we have. With children it isn’t always about the amount of time versus the quality of time.  Episode 65 is about creating memories and the importance of them in our kid’s lives.

Jason shared how a friend was talking about how he lived with a single mom. However he spent occasional weekends with his dad and they are awesome memories. He looks back with great fondness.  Of course now we take so many more pictures than in the past, it’s easier to remember them.

Here are some ways to create memories with your child:

Go on a one on one vacation. Leave the spouse and other siblings and take the child somewhere over the weekend. For example, the camping trips, stay in a hotel, amusement parks, etc. The one on one time is so valuable.

Schedule a regular date with your child. For example, every Sunday night, maybe your daughter and you go to dinner, or go for a walk. Something on a regular basis.

Make holidays significant. Decorate, make them a big deal. Not for the presents but for the celebration of being together.

Make a regular dinner night. For example, in our house, Friday night is always mexican food. The kids (and us) look forward to it.

Rooting for a team – Watch or even attend your favorite sporting events and be sure to include the kids.

Share a hobby together – Jason’s dad had a coin collection. For a while when he was young, he collected coins and would show his dad the new finds.

Take a lot of pictures or videos. Record things that you may regularly do: reading time at night, helping with homework, etc. They will be able to …

The Importance of Eating Dinner Together – Dudes To Dads Ep 64

For this episode 64, we discuss the importance of family dinners.  While we have mentioned this in the past, we wanted to dedicate an entire episode to it because of it’s great importance.  We each had different experiences growing up and having family meals.  Anne Fishel, co-founder of The Family Dinner Project and a professor at Harvard Medical School, wrote the book “Home for Dinner.”  She has a great Washington Post Article in whch she provides some data and reasons why these family dinners are so important:

1) Young kids learned 1,000 rare words at the dinner table, compared to only 143 from parents reading storybooks aloud. Kids who have a large vocabulary read earlier and more easily.

2) Adolescents who ate family meals five to seven times a week were twice as likely to get A’s in school as those who ate dinner with their families fewer than two times a week.

3) Children who eat regular family dinners also consume more fruits, vegetables, vitamins and micronutrients, as well as fewer fried foods and soft drinks.

4) A stack of studies link regular family dinners with lowering a host of high risk teenage behaviorsparents fear: smoking, binge drinking, marijuana use, violence, school problems, eating disorders and sexual activity. In one study of more than 5,000 Minnesota teens, researchers concluded that regular family dinners were associated with lower rates of depression and suicidal thoughts.

Dinner is the most reliable way for families to connect and find out what’s going on with each other. Kids who eat dinner with their parents experience less stress and have a better relationship with them

A parent and child can share a positive experience – a well-cooked meal, a joke, or a story – and these small moments can gain momentum to create stronger connections …

Dealing With Bad Influences on Your Kids – Dudes To Dads Ep 63

While there are a lot of bad influences in the world, for this episode we are talking about people.  You may not always love the people your kid is around.  Whether it’s friends at school or when your child has a significant other as they get older.  What is the best way to handle this?   In episode 63, we discuss tips to deal with bad influences on your kids.  Here are some tips:

1. Don’t blame or judge – I knew Johnny was a bad influence on you. Don’t point any fingers. Keep it to yourself or the child will begin to resent you.

2. Keep Connected – Ask them how they would handle situations. “What if all of your friends are drinking and ask you to do it?”

3. Model Good Behavior and Character – Monkey see, monkey do. Our children watch how we handle situations. Find something that is lost, you return it.

4. Don’t Press Your Personal View Too Much – It’s ok to make your position clear but don’t push too hard.

5. Invite them to your house or you chaperone the outing – You can then see what is going on and listen to conversations

6. Suggest a better option – Your daughter is going to be hanging out with a boy you don’t like. You might say, “oh I was thinking of taking you shopping this afternoon. There is a one-time sale so it has to be today.

7. Communicate about the situation – Ask what they have in common, what they like about them. If you see something that happened you may have to piont out that friends don’t put down other friends or make them do stuff.…

What Do You Do When Your Child Favors One Parent Over The Other – Dudes To Dads Ep 62

Alan & Jason discuss when one parent is preferred by the child over the other.  When a child is first born, men often feel like they are not as connected to the baby as they would desire.  If your wife is breastfeeding, you can really help your wife but you can’t substitute what she offers to the baby.  Sure you can hold the baby, feed it, change it, but it’s not exactly the same as she has had the baby inside her for over 9 months.

Jason tells some stories about how his kids prefered his wife over him.  The reality is that very young children typically prefer the parent they spend the most time with. It’s important to communicate with your spouse and allow the “not as favored parent” some alone time with the baby.

Jason & Alan then discuss 5 tips from Dr. Erica Reischer, author of the book “What Great Parents Do.” who had these 5 tips:

1) Never respond in a negative way – Even if the kids is being negative, don’t respond that way.  Really bad thing to say would be “You didn’t want me to do it yesterday!”

2) React with Empathy – If your child says “I want mommy!” answer with “I hear  you want mommy and know you really love mommy”  It’s important that the child feels heard.

3) Ensure each parent strikes a balance between work and fun – The child may perceive one parent as “work” and the other as “fun”.  When dad comes home it’s PLAYTIME.

4) Formulate a predictable schedule – alternating duties so the child isn’t thinking mom doesn’t want to read to us tonight, instead dad is reading because it’s monday.  He always reads on Mondays.

5) Above all, focus on love and

Top Fears of Becoming a New Dad – Dudes To Dads Ep 61

Dealing with the transition from single guy to being a dad is exactly why Dudes To Dads was founded.  For most, the process is scary, unknown, and brings up issues that you have never had to deal with before.  In this episode 61, Alan and Jason discuss some of the top fears that men have in becoming a father.  Dads need to realize that they are not alone.  Having these fears is very common.
1. Labor – The actual process of delivery.  It is like nothing you have ever seen before.  Life coming out of your wife.

2. Fear of health issues for the baby during pregnancy – You just want the baby to be healthy and be delivered ok.3. Fear of health issues for the baby after pregnancy – Once the bay has arrived, you once again just want the baby to be healthy and thriving.

4. Will I be able to provide financially? Can I afford the baby?

5. Will I ever get to sleep again?  Eventually you will but the beginning is pretty brutal.

6. Fear of having sex during pregnancy?  Will sex hurt the child?  Will sex potentially hurt my wife?

7. Will having the baby kill our intimacy?
 Probably yes, but there are things you can do to reduce that….and some things you can’t.

8. Having Sex after childbirth – What will it be like?  Things may be different physically and emotionally.

9.  How can I keep the child safe?  – The world is a scary place!  We just want to keep them from harm.

10. How will I be able to maintain a work-life balance? See episode 46.  Things just sort of change.  You are forced to make changes.

11. Is everything we do going to center around the baby/kids?  In the

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