Sunday, June 15, 2014

Dad Lessons


I've written birth stories, mom confessions, and heart-pouring revelations about the incredible blessing of motherhood.

What I don't always point out, however, is my parenthood is a two-part situation. That guy shown cradling his sweet babies plays an enormous role in not only saving my sanity when it comes to raising three kids, but a very heavy hand in the raising itself. I know I have been mushy about this dude all week, but it's far from undeserving. He's a wonderful husband, but he is an incredible daddy. I'd make a list of all the awesome things he does, but I wouldn't know where to begin or end. From midnight feedings to blowout diapers, fixing bloody knees to pureeing butternut squash, and doling out lessons as often as hugs, he's first class, y'all.

Today I want to wish Jonathan a very Happy Father's Day, his first with three sidekicks. As much as I talk about how cool it is to be a mama, I couldn't be one without him {literally and figuratively}. He's taught me a ridiculous amount about caring for kids, and he surprises me a little more each day with how good he is at handling business. However, since he is not my Daddy, I thought I'd let the kids who call him that share a little about the lessons he's taught them. Here are the results:

Nathan: "He teaches me fractions and some other cool actions. He also taught me to swim underwater and beat the hard levels on video games. He makes me feel so good whenever he tells me he's proud of me and if I do good things he gives me treats like candy and little boxes of Legos. I think he's the best dad ever because he is very nice to me. He makes me feel safe when I'm outside in the dark and hear scary noises. He tells me how long I need to brush my teeth and that's good because I don't want to go to the dentist and have to get my cavities filled. I love him tons and tons and tons and tons and tons."


Owen: "He teaches me about swimming lessons and about playing outside lessons and about chicken nugget lessons. I like to play toys with him and he pushes me to the moon. He will do it tomorrow. I like him to cook little hot dogs. I like him to snuggle in the chair and watch cooking shows. He is the best daddy because he is just the best ever. He's not a meanie mama."


Nora: Obviously this one can't speak for herself, so I'll loosely translate. Nora would like to say her daddy has taught her to dance like no one's watching, kiss as hard as possible, and always steal an extra snuggle. He's changed countless diapers for this one, stayed up all hours of the night during a rather rough teething episode, and is still desperate for me to hand her over when he gets home from work. Heaven help anyone who ever gives a second look to this daddy's girl.

Good stuff, right? Jonathan has made a huge impact on our kids, and it's just the beginning. No matter how many timeout threats, lectures, and countdowns he shouts in their direction, he is number one to all three. They look to him for advice, for information, and most importantly, for love. Although he is a huge blessing in their lives, this guy had to learn it somewhere. I mean, dads don't just come pre-programmed with lessons:


Of course, Mama had to get it from somewhere, too:


Wonderful daddies run in our families, and we are thankful for every one of them. Happy Father's Day to all the rad dads out there. Thank you for holding hands during contractions, pushing swings for hours, and being there when we need you, no matter the distance.


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