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Featured stories, which means they’re better somehow.

Cloth Diapers – Findings from Year One
8 years ago

Cloth Diapers – Findings from Year One

Cloth Diapers Year One header image

Diapers are diapers, right? As a first time dad thinking about all the things that you are going to need once you find out your are going to have a baby, diapers seems like they would be last on the list – they were on mine anyway. Especially with all the cool Daddy-Tech out there to play with, why would you even want to think about diapers?

Until, of course, that night at dinner when my (slightly crunchy) wife said “I think we should use cloth diapers.” This hit me from so far out of left field that I knew I needed to throw myself headlong into becoming a cloth diaper expert ASAP before answering her question…and it was a bigger challenge than you might think.

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Book Review: How to Con Your Kid
8 years ago

Book Review: How to Con Your Kid

Are you having trouble getting your kid to eat, go to sleep, sit still or do your taxes? A parenting manual from Quirk Books might be exactly what you’re looking for. The book, How to Con Your Kid, features games and tricks for parents to get their kid to do anything.

Think of it as how to Win Friends and Influence People – Parents Edition.

The introduction claims that after reading the book you’ll be able to beat your children at their own game. The book will show you how to track distract and redirect your child so that they behave. But shouldn’t you feel bad about tricking your child?

Abso-effing-lutely not!

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Book Review: The Art of Roughhousing
8 years ago

Book Review: The Art of Roughhousing

Many parents wonder how much roughhousing is too much roughhousing. Two fathers set out to answer that question with their book The Art of Roughhousing: Good Old-Fashioned Horseplay and Why Every Kid Needs It. The dads, Anthony T. DeBenedet M.D. and Lawrence J. Cohen PhD, make a great case for throwing your kid around like a sock monkey, then show you some tactics and how-tos for doing it effectively.

There has always been some grey-area discussion about acceptable levels of roughhousing, and whether it’s good for your child. The truth is that roughhousing is great! Every family child is different, so appropriate (and physically-possible) roughhousing games will vary from one house to the next. DeBenedet and Cohen offer many activities that are broken up by chapter into different physical classes, such as “Games,” “Contact,” and “Imagination.” The book covers over 60 activities in six classes, so there’s something here for every type of parent.

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Caine’s Arcade: Fun Pass & Fun Times
8 years ago

Caine’s Arcade: Fun Pass & Fun Times

I woke up this past Saturday in a warm house, surrounded by snow capped mountains as Friday’s storm dumped rain on L.A.’s suburban west valley. It was a beautiful, crisp morning as I headed out the door at 7:30AM to drive 50 miles towards East L.A. so I could support Caine’s Arcade.

I exited Mission Rd. and immediately found myself in what looked like another country. The graffiti-lined industrial road was packed with auto body shops. There was dude after dude standing outside in the street, trying to get me and other passing cars into their shop like they were competing parking lots on Sunset Blvd. It was extremely humbling.

“Most of our business has gone online because we really don’t get the walk up traffic like we used to. So Caine’s chances of getting one customer is pretty hard,” said Caine’s father, George.

I arrived shortly after 8:20AM where only a few people gathered in front of Smart Parts Aftermarket. I initially drove past the shop, expecting to get a cue from a giant crowd out front. I had navigation in my car and still managed to pass the shop (that’s how many auto body shops there are on this street). I turned around and found a spot down the street, said “goodbye” to my car, and walked towards Caine’s Arcade.

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Fatherhood On the Go, Part 5: The Magnitude
8 years ago

Fatherhood On the Go, Part 5: The Magnitude

Editor’s Note: “Fatherhood On the Go” is the multi-part story of Remy Stevensen and his family. Please read Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4. Also, consider donating to this cause (links removed, campaign over) to make Remy’s ride a success!

fatherhood on the go 5

I had a big post planned. I was going to start off with “Well we’re not in Kansas anymore…” and I was going to say how awkward we felt in Kansas and our string of bad service and weather luck. I was going to tell you all about “D” an Afghanistan (and probably Iraq) War Veteran who like me is plagued with PTSD. And I was going to throw in a big spiel about how war freaking sucks and I cried for miles after meeting “D.” I was going to tell you all about our (way too long) vacation in Omaha, and yeah…

I have to be honest, this has been a difficult trip. In the forty-five days – 45 – we have been on the road, we have had a lot of hardships. Our longest mileage day totaled 95.6 miles. We’ve gone through so many diapers it’s astounding. We have lost over 50lbs in gear. We have ridden 1350 miles to date. And, unfortunately, somewhere around 184,500 children have died due to a lack of clean drinking water. I take that very seriously. I am not feeling that enough people care about the magnitude of that.

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8BD Talks Fatherhood & Skateboarding With Bart Saric
8 years ago

8BD Talks Fatherhood & Skateboarding With Bart Saric

8BitDad Talks Fatherhood and Skateboarding with Bart Saric

A couple of months ago, a video of a young kid skateboarding quietly bled through some of the skateboarding forums. Most skateboarding videos on YouTube are home videos of teenagers failing hard at poppin’ driveway ollies. Then, you watch Bart Saric’s video “Born In.”

Saric has been filming his son, Odin, since birth. And month by month, year by year, you watch Odin go from strangely-coordinated lump-of-baby to (technically speaking) pro. Or, in short, this kid is gnarly.

We reached out to Bart Saric because we had to know more about he and Odin. Turns out Bart’s pretty gnarly too.

First things first – “Born In” after the jump!

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The Unpretty Portrayal Of Dads In The Disney Princess Movies, Part 1
8 years ago

The Unpretty Portrayal Of Dads In The Disney Princess Movies, Part 1

The Unpretty Portrayal of Dads in the Disney Princess Movies, part 1

Editor’s Note: This is part one of a two-part epic about how dads are portrayed in the Disney Princess movies. Check back tomorrow to see part two!

As the father of a five-year-old girl, I fought the good fight against the Disney Princess franchise and – I’m man enough to admit – I lost. I totally got my butt kicked. My wife and I did our best to keep our little girl away from all of the princess culture indoctrination material with the crowns, make-up, jewelry, and the wishing that someday her prince would come, but, despite our valiant efforts, Disney Princesses found their way onto her radar when she was about three years old and they’ve stayed there ever since. And, now that I’m two years in, I’ll acknowledge that the whole princess thing isn’t completely horrible, provided that, as a parent, you balance it out with a lot of other material and some indoctrination of your own.

Our main worry was that some of the Disney Princesses aren’t exactly the best role models for young kids. They’re often submissive, passive, way too focused on their looks, and completely beholden to the men who come to their rescue. And, trust me, as the father of an only girl, you definitely want your little sweetheart to act more like Wonder Woman or Hit Girl than Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty. And, thankfully, I think my daughter gets it. When she plays with her princess figures, she has THEM save the princes and not the other way around. She’ll wear princess dresses, but only if she can also carry her homemade lightsaber too. We somehow stumbled into a nice equilibrium with the Disney Princess craze, which was a nice surprise, but, once I stopped worrying about how the princesses were portrayed in the Disney films, I had time to start worrying about how the dads were portrayed. You know, the kings, the lost aristocrats, the noble warriors… the extremely, extremely absent father figures. And, as you can guess, what I was seeing wasn’t very pretty.

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Things Public School Teachers Are Afraid to Tell You
8 years ago

Things Public School Teachers Are Afraid to Tell You

I received my first teaching job right out of college. I have been fortunate enough to have had teaching experiences with students who come from all different places on the socio-economic scale. I have had many interactions with the parents of my students, both positive and negative and when my daughter was born, I began thinking more heavily about education from the parental view, as well as the teacher side.

If you happen to be the parent of a child in the public school system, or even someone who doesn’t live under a rock, then you are aware of the current trend of attacks on teachers and teachers’ unions for being greedy, lazy and ineffective, how our schools are failing, and how everyone should put their kids in private or charter schools. There are, however, many aspects of the teacher side that are not told because of either fear of professional reprisal, or because parents simply don’t want to hear them.

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