Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Ever meet one of those weird parents who doesn't allow their child to watch TV? Thats me. Yes I am one of those weirdo's who hates Elmo and Dora and avoids television at all costs. Family, friends and just about everyone thinks it's weird even though a team of doctors and experts on the subject agree with me.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that children under 2 years old not watch any TV and that those older than 2 watch no more than 1 to 2 hours a day of quality programming.

Sierra has never watched television - ever. She might have accidentally stolen glances from time to time but we've never sat down to watch TV. Even I, as a full grown adult only watches about 2 hours of television a week (I watch  Premier League Football Saturday mornings, sue me). This is for a variety of reasons; the first 2 years of life are considered a critical time for brain development. TV and other electronic media can get in the way of exploring, playing, and interacting with parents and others, which encourages learning and healthy physical and social development. TV Interferes with the development of intelligence, thinking skills and imagination. If that doesn't sound bad enough children under 3 who have been exposed to television are at a much higher risk for developing ADHD. Most children's programs last about 7 minutes before a commercial and your child's young moldable brain actually becomes wired for 7 minutes of attention! (Read the Study Here). I'm sure not every kid who watches TV at a young age becomes an overweight, unimaginative little nit-wit but why take the risk? Is The Backyardigans really worth it? I won't even get into the disgusting marketing that the networks, programs and commercials push onto your child, thats a whole different blog post.

Now, I am not saying people who allow their toddlers to tune in are bad parents, it's a personal decision my family has made based on careful research and proven information from experts we trust. We do own a television, but we have been discussing getting rid of it entirely, thoughts? If anyone disagrees and thinks TV has helped their child please chime in. I am not claiming to be an expert - only claiming that I trust experts. -Craig

My Cousin Jada

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Hi guys - So just last week I found out my four year old cousin Jada has been diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis. As you can imagine this has come as a huge blow to my entire family but we are trying to stay optimistic and be there for one another in this time.

I along with Lauren and Sierra will be walking (and strollering!) in the Great Strides National Walk Event in Boston. We are walking to raise money for the CF Foundation for a cure. I know the times are tough with money but if you can afford to even send $1.00 - please do. We are trying everything we can to not only raise money for a cure for Jada, but a cure for every child who suffers with this disease.

EDIT: Thank you to everyone who donated, I reached my goal (and then some!) in 7 hours! It means the world to me how supportive my friends and family are <3

Here is a photo of Jada and her Dad / The Official 2011 Great Strides Video:

Happy Easter!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter everyone! Right now Lauren, Sierra and I are at the grandparent's house celebrating Easter and Lauren's Birthday. Currently we're lounging around in PJ's and opening Easter baskets. Hope everyone is having a great easter with their families and enjoying the day off from work! -C


Here is one more photo of Sierra in her Easter dress, try not to die from cuteness:

Here is Sierra investigating her new "Easter Puppy" stuffed animal from Nana.

One of the funnest things about coming to visit the grandparents is rediscovering old toys and things we haven't seen in awhile, like Sierra's old Bumbo, which she is much too big for now but insisted on eating her breakfast in.

Before Lauren, Sierra and I all lived together in Boston they both lived at Lauren's parents for awhile. Although living together was the best decision we ever made and I love it, it was fun having a slumber party in Sierra's first nursery. Check out these cute owl decals we decorated it with.

iBaby: Baby-Proofing your iPhone

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

While trying to think of something to write about; my daughter was busy chomping on my iPhone and it hit me like a ton of bricks: why not write about technology and babies. In today's day and age almost everyone is walking around with a rather expensive smart phone in their pocket and our kids want in!

Now while I'm not about to go out and buy my 20 month old an iPhone 4 I do feel badly tap-tapping away on it and telling her "No No" when she reaches for it with the "I want to play too Dad!" eyes. So I find myself giving in pretty often and letting her fiddle with it which usually means covering it in 'toddle gunk', rearranging my apps and once even deleting this really adorable video I had of her from around Christmas time (such a bummer!). So what is a parent to do?

Your first option is: do nothing. Realize it's just a phone and it's a baby - it's bound to happen and let them chomp away (this is the route I go). Your other option is to buy some kind of protective casing to shield your precious phone away from baby's choppers. I have never tried one of these personally because the lady and I decided no screen media before two (here's why), but our little one will be two in mid-august and it might be fun to introduce some interactive screen media which the app store is full of!

1) The Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn "iCan Play" Case - $14.99 (Being released in July 2011)
I stumbled upon this case on one of my favorite 'daddy-gear' sites and found it really interesting and cool! Not only does it house the iPhone securely it also has other features commonly found on baby-toys (soft rubber grips, handles and even some baby chew-links!). The most important feature is the plastic covering that goes over the phone that allows the baby to play with the phone without actually touching the screen! It is priced at only $14.99 believe it or not and I will most likely be picking this up come August.

2) Griffin's "Woogie" iPhone Case + Speaker - $19.99 - BUY NOW
Griffin's soft squid like case may seem cuter than Fisher-Price's iCan Play case but it won't keep your iPhone as safe. If you notice, the iPhone can be removed with just a little lift of the velcro flap, I don't know about your toddler but mine would figure that out in about 15 seconds. Although it might not be as safe, it does provide some other great features not found in the iCan Play, like a speaker system that will boost the audio of whatever your little one is doing on the phone and a soft fun shape which will cushion the phone nicely when your kid whips it across the room. This one will set you back $20 which again isn't bad for an iPhone case w/ built in speaker.

3) OtterBox Defender Series iPhone Case - $49.95 - BUY NOW
Now this case is a bit different than the two I mentioned before in that it's not specifically designed for children, in reality it's probably designed for being run over by a tank. This may be taking it to the extreme but this thing is as bad ass as iPhone cases come. If you check YouTube there are videos of people tossing their phone off 20 story buildings, putting them in the bathtub and even running it over with a truck. Although this one will run you about 50 bucks (more than double the two previous cases) it's nice because you can leave it on all the time without looking like a weirdo so no need to take your phone out of it's normal case to put into the baby case. 

Feel free to leave some comments about how you baby-proof your electronics! -C

GUEST DAD: Jorge Narvaez

Monday, April 18, 2011

Hi everybody! My name is Jorge Narvaez and this is my definition of family, not my quote though:

"The family. We are a strange little band of characters trudging through life sharing diseases and toothpaste, coveting one another's desserts, hiding shampoo, borrowing money, locking each other out of our rooms, inflicting pain and kissing to heal it in the same instant, loving, laughing, defending, and trying to figure out the common thread that bound us all together" -Unknown

So yea, I'm the awesome young 24 year-old father Alexa and Eliana Narvaez and we absolutely LOVE music. So much, that we posted a video of us doing a cover and it went viral!!!. So now we have an awesome thing going on our YouTube channel. What!!!? You didnt know?? Oh OK i see i see. That's cool homie! I get it. :(........ NO im kidding so yea. There have been awesome episodes in our lives, but this one that occurred on YouTube has been the most awesome one. So far we have over 18.5 million views on our channel in less than 3 months and climbing.

Being a single father is not easy but its freaking awesome because we learn from each other as we go along everyday. Bond? Dude, the bond with my daughters is very powerful and I'm not exaggerating. We're very close and trust each other with everything we do. Music is like the glue that keeps us together and reminds us that being a family that broke apart is not the end, but just the beginning of a different but wonderful life. I hope you all take a look at our channel and become of our journey. Please enjoy this awesome bog about AWESOME DADS OUT THERE. Take care everybody and good luck with everything!!!!!!! -Jorge N.

p.s. if you haven't seen the video Jorge is talking about, you must be living under a rock - but here it is (prepare to die of cuteness)

UGGGH MUZIK! (How not to raise a Juggalo!)

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

MTV ROTS YOUR BRAINSSSS!! Well, it used to, because they used to actually play music. Now its just teens with questionable morals making bad decisions and calling it reality tv, or a gameshow, see also: Teen Mom (yuck), 16 and preggo (gross), Skins (nasty), RWRR: The Challenge (meatheads)! Ok it still rots your brains! I digress, this is not a post about how bad reality tv is or the fact that mtv does not play music anymore, it is about my fears and frustrations over what to expose my children to when it comes to music because I am smart enough to know that whatever I want him to listen to, he will do the direct opposite.

I came up in a time where swears were one of the biggest fears in what I listened to, and this was not much of an issue with bands like Fugazi, Descendants, and Gorilla Biscuits in my collection. I guess I got lucky in that I took to skateboarding at a young age, and the culture that came along with that was mischievous and  definitely posed harm to my physical being (throwing my 12 year old body down stairs and off of ramps and whatnot), but my mental state was fueled by the positivity that surrounded it all. Have you ever seen footage from a Gorilla Biscuits show? People piled up on the stage to sing along or moshed with these big stupid grins on their faces, nothing like this bullshit:


Me: Circa 1991

So anyways, that was me, and what I grew up with. What do I do for Christian and Hendrix? I have enough time to worry about this for Hendrix, but Christian is quickly developing an interest in music and I can only play the blue album (weezer) for him so many times before he realizes its not current and none of his friends listen to it. He has taken an interest in Phoenix and MGMT, which I am cool with, but also The Dropkick Murphys (thanks to his mom), which I cant stand. Its better then slipknot though, right?

These are his 9 year old tastes though, once he grows a bit and starts being subjected to more of what mass media wants him to consume, thats when I am really going to start to worry. Every fucking song out there seems to glorify misogyny, greed, or violence, not to mention the lack of musical integrity. How does one go about raising a musical snob? Keep exposing him to good music? Allow access to all genres (age appropriate of course) and hope he has discerning tastes? Is it too much to hope this is him on his wedding day:

What are your pre-teens listening to? How do you swallow your child wanting to listen to Eminem or Slipknot? Or even worse, ICP!!! OMG there should be a handbook on how not to raise a Juggalo!

PHOTOS: Weekends

Friday's for most people mean checking their watch every few minutes waiting until it's 5:00 so they can scream TGIF and rush out the door to head to the bar with their buddies. For me it means screaming WE SO EXCITED and rushing home to my lady and my baby for a weekend of adventures, playgrounds and naps. Here are a few photos of what we did this weekend:

Here we are in Brighton Center playing 'airplane' (one of Sierra's favorite games as you can see. 

Sierra created a game called "pick up all the pinecones from this random church's "front yard" and throw them all onto the sidewalk. It was basically the best game ever. (p.s. that coffee is from CafeNation if you haven't been, you're missing out)

Sierra found the only patch of sun and was just soaking it all in.

Later that night we went to go see the New England Revolution vs Real Salt Lake at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, MA. Our family is pretty into "The Revs" and we have been season ticket holders for years. Before the game we did some tailgating which is always a lot of fun, who doesn't love a grilled tofu dog? Mmmmm....

Here's a view of the stadium from the ramp when you walk in.

On Sunday we decided to head to New Bedford to visit the grandparents and some friends (and maybe get some free laundry services - Thanks Mom & Dad!). Our lovely friend "Uncle Matt" bought Sierra this awesome turquoise wagon which we used to pull her to this little playground near my parents house.

My Dad may be 55 but he doesn't let it show, this is him doing back flips on the monkey-bars.
My Dad rules.

This is Sierra and I playing one of her other favorite games "peek-a-boo" through these little windows. I was trying to get a kiss but she wasn't having it.

My Dad basically stole Sierra the whole time which is fine with me because I love watching them play with one another, he is a very proud grampa.

This is Sierra's very cool p-leather jacket which she insists on wearing quite regularly now, as well as her sweet Timberland boots which are much too big for her right now but she loves them so we let her wear them anyway.

A rare photo of Sierra standing still long enough to snap a decent photograph!

Meet "Baby" Sierra's AmericanGirl Bitty Baby doll we got her for Christmas, although still nameless we're a big fan of her and she comes with us all the time. Now accepting name suggestions by the way.

Here we are wagon-ing back to my parents house after the playground.

My beautiful girlfriend & our beautiful baby striking a pose.

FAMILY (from left to right): Uncle Will, Lauren, Sierra, Aunty Jill, Uncle Matt, Grandpa and Gramma.

Later that night we went to visit my sister who has two little girl twins, names Autumn and Ashley. They go to bed a bit (lot) earlier than Sierra so they were less than enthused with our play date but we managed to snap a few decent photos in between crying :) - Here is Autumn being adorable.

Ashley and Sierra just lounging around. Well hope you enjoyed the photos, It's only Tuesday and I already am looking at my watch to see if it's Friday! - Craig

p.s. SEE MORE of our weekend @

Hi, my name is Michael and this is my first blog post.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Im not very good with first impressions, well not in person anyways, most people walk away with that "wow hes kind of a sarcastic prick" look on their faces. OR they think "wow he is a really sweet guy" which ends badly when they find out that im kind of a sarcastic prick! All kidding aside: I'm a pretty good person (by my standards of course), but really sarcastic. Keep this in mind for future blog posts.
HI! I'm Michael, sometimes I go by Michael Savant, hey honey, or most frequently: DADDY.  I have a drop dead gorgeous wife named Adriana, and two boys Christian and Hendrix who are 9 and 17 months. I live with Hendrix 7 days a week and have Christian every other weekend per a court order that hangs over my head like a black cloud, yeah, fuck how fathers are treated in the eyes of judges in MA, more (see: A LOT MORE) on that later. We live in a loft just outside of the city my wife and I met and fell in love with, Providence RI. I DJ and run a promotions company called NextHYPE for a living, and love every moment of it.

My family supports and practices cloth diapering, breast feeding,  co-sleeping,  attachment parenting,  baby wearing, and  a whole slew of other tops Craig and I will be writing about as this site progresses. I have a hard time sharing intimate details of my life as I am a very private person, living a very public life, but am going to try to do so as time goes on. Thanks for taking the time to read this! I will leave you with a few photos of myself and my family, try not to die from the kids and wife are not too shabby either.

BOOK REVIEW: "Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture"

Saturday, April 9, 2011

A few weeks ago Lauren told me about a book she heard about on NPR called "Cinderella Ate My Daughter". She said that she really wanted to read it and how great it sounded, so being the amazing boyfriend I am, I went to a Borders and shelled out $25.99 for it. Little did I know she'd read it in two days and then beg me to read it because, according to her it was important to read for someone with a daughter - what could I say? So here I was reading a big pink book on the subway. Not only is it pink, but it's covered in glitter and features a princess on the cover - I assure you I looked very manly reading this. Once I began reading it I felt the irony of my embarrassment.

I've never reviewed a book before so bear with me here. The first few chapters really grabbed me and I was very impressed by the thoughts, ideas and concepts that Orenstein brought up. The premise of the book is to show that the 'pretty pink princess' phase isn't as safe and cute as parents and children are made to think. The book starts off well enough and she pulls you in with her witty comments, my favorite of which was "Sesame Street Walker" referring to the portrayal of the (few and far between) female characters on Sesame Street. She does not stop at Seasame Street, she goes on to trash disney, dora, barbie and britney. The book raises a lot of interesting ideas about what these things really stand for, for example disney princesses are fine and dandy but when we look past surface we see at what they represent; weak women waiting for a wealthy man to rescue her, The Little Mermaid's Ariel even gives up her voice for a man.

One of the aspects I loved about the book was how personal it was. Each chapter tackles a new 'phase' in a young girls life through not only statistics and interviews but through intimate stories about her own battles between herself and her daughter Daisy. Hearing the stories, quotes and situations she went through personally really helps the reader connect and feel the 'fear' of these phases. Orenstein is a leader in children's studies and it was a breath of fresh air to hear her admit to struggling with these things just like us regular parents.

Although the book brings up a lot of interesting questions, it provides little to no answers. I understand it's not a how-to or self-help book but I expected to feel more prepared how to protect my daughter from this culture not more confused than ever. Perhaps there just isn't an "answer". Even Orenstein's daughter Daisy who was brought up by one of the biggest crusaders against all things pink went through a Disney Princess phase, so perhaps it really is just unavoidable. Maybe the 'great big marketing machine that is Disney' (and Matel, and Nickelodeon, and MTV and and and...) is just too big and we just can't fight it - but we can sure as hell try!  Although the book doesn't say "do this to stop that..." it does bring up a lot of very interesting thoughts you may not have considered before, it is important to be aware that these influences do exist and I suggest this book to any father of a young daughter.

EDIT --- Peggy Orenstein contacted us! She noticed my complaint of 'lack of answers' and let us know that although they may not be in the book she does provide 'idead to combat' here: - Check it out guys, lot's of neat links and ideas!

Hello, my name is Craig. Welcome to “The Hipster Dad”.

Monday, April 4, 2011

For the past twenty minutes I have been looking at other blog’s “first posts” to try and find some inspiration for writing this damn thing. After looking at 10 or 15 I have decided, I’m just gonna wing it. My name is Craig and I am a Dad. 19 months ago my first daughter, Sierra, was born at the Brigham and Women’s hospital in Boston and it was the biggest life-changer since discovering the blue album by Weezer when I was 8.

I am 24, going on 25, and living in Boston with Lauren (my baby-mama) and the cutest little toddler you have ever seen. I am a graphic designer who runs his own business but also have a degree in art education (but good luck finding a job teaching these days). Our apartment is littered with books, records and toys. We are vegan, big supporters of breastfeeding and don’t let Sierra watch TV. Yes, I’m one of those parents!
I started this blog with my BDF (best dad friend) Michael because we think being Dads rules and are sick of the bad rap dads get. Oh yeah and we wanted an outlet to show off our insanely awesome spawn. One thing you realize about parenting is it’s a women’s world out there. With this blog, and our hands on parenting, we hope to break down the stereotype / stigma around Dads’ roles. Hope you enjoy the blog!
“I cannot think of any need in childhood as strong as the need for a father’s protection.” - Sigmond Freud
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...