Goal Check-in as a SAHD and Seven More

It was only 4 months ago when left the work world and officially became a stay-at-home dad! It feels like longer but also like time has flown by, if that makes any sense.

So far, our new life is much better than before, and I’m enjoying it more each day. Avery didn’t do much the first few months, but she’s beginning to be quite lively and responsive. I have no clue what her coos and pterodactyl-like screeches mean, but they keep me company way more than her silent newborn days!

The day I started this life, I posted seven goals as a new stay-at-home dad and today I’m going to see how I’ve done so far and list seven more goals.

My previous 7 goals:

  1. Figure out a good routine. This was a major concern for me as a new parent and SAHD, but it ended up going pretty well. I was able to enjoy Avery taking  a 3 hour morning nap most days and then another one in the early afternoon. Her eating from the bottle was hit or miss (yo-yo dieting), but I’ve been consistently taking her on walks each day and enjoying quality time with her.
  2. Keep a (somewhat) clean house. I don’t do as thorough of a job as Going Mom, but I vacuum daily and the house is never a pure mess….yet.
  3. Cook good food. I’ve been able to make a few dishes for Kelley that aren’t just thrown together and she usually approves. Sometimes I’ll add too much or too little of something, but she’s always grateful and gives me “constructive” feedback. I enjoy being able to have a healthy meal for Kelley to bring to work as well as breakfast and dinner, and so far so good.
  4. Post to the blog at least twice a week. I’ve been really good at posting daily so far, so I’m happy to go above and beyond this goal!
  5. Take a lot of pictures and video. Ha, “a lot” is one way to describe it, but more like “take up half of my hard drive” is a better description. How do you NOT take pictures of your beautiful baby? Goal met x infinity!
  6. Find time to work out during the day. I worried about this one, a lot, but with her 3 hour naps I could easily fit in a workout for the first several weeks. Then, she started taking longer to get tired, so now I take her with me to workout. Sometimes it’s inside with a video (my last preference), outside in the garage for lifting, or running in the B.O.B. All in all, she usually does great and seems to enjoy watching her daddy jump around and look goofy. Phew!
  7. Make our own snacks. Doing good here. I made several batches of goat cheese crackers for Kelley, including a special Mother’s Day batch, and have been making plenty of different variations of my protein granola.
Can never get enough of this!


So far so good with those 7 goals, and will keep working on them as I continue my at-home dad life. I have no regrets on making the decision to stay at home and raise our beautiful daughter and I am just a happier person overall. Even better is that since I’m happier, Going Mom is happier and we have a healthier life as a result. Happiness rules!

As time goes by, things change, my goals included, so I have 7 new ones to share and strive to attain…

1. Teach Avery about healthy eating and how it is enjoyable. Now that she’s starting to eat solids with our baby-led weaning approach, I am standing strong on only offering vegetables for now. As she becomes more comfortable with carrots and broccoli, we’ll offer fruits like banana and mango. For now, the next step might be a less sweet fruit like avocado; this will be a fun one to clean up after!

Catching on quickly!!
Catching on quickly!!

2. Have better time management. I’ve been getting seriously into blogging and find that I have the “need” to create daily posts. I know the world won’t end if I skip a day or two, but it’s how my mind works. My priority should be and always is my family, I just need to remind myself of this sometimes. I enjoy writing posts and sharing stories/thoughts, but I just have to get better at when I do this.

She did great for my first time instructing our neighbors on a workout
She did great for my first time instructing our neighbors on a workout

If blogging wasn’t enough, I’m now starting to have a group meet in my neighborhood where I will instruct workout sessions. I’m not certified and don’t charge for it, but this is something I want to do when Avery gets older. I love our neighborhood and enjoy helping those who care, so hopefully I can manage this as well.

3. Stress Less!! This one obviously ties into time management, but it’s something I do way too often. When I was working, my stress affected me so bad it took a toll on my health and was one of the reasons we struggled to have a baby. Needless to say, stress is a dangerous thing that affects brain, body, and those around you.

This picture means more than words can describe and my stress made us wait too long!
This picture means more than words can describe and my stress made us wait too long!

I feel it creep up on my when I’m trying to take on too much like write a post, prepare meals, clean bottles from the day, workout, and clean house all at once. You’d think as someone who stays at home this is easy, but I find a way to make it difficult. Either way, I need to reign in on the stress and kick it to the curb!

4. Say “I love you” at least once a day. To Avery, to my wife, and to family, these three words are more powerful than you can imagine. I hope I am doing good on this one already, but I’m making it a goal to ensure I don’t let up. This is something I think everyone should heed; go say “I love you.” to your family and watch the smile on their faces.

5. Keep “going” with my blog. I couldn’t help myself, sorry. Yes, my blog has become a part of me and as a proud dad, I want to let the world know. I’ve been fortunate to connect with many other dad bloggers and I’m even taking part of a couple of campaigns for Father’s Day (coming soon).

I want to upgrade to a self-hosted blog soon, but need to make sure I have the financial means to do so. I love the community I am a part of and thank everyone reading for doing so!

6. Make healthy cupcakes. Sounds weird, but this task has been assigned to me by my wife. I need to create a recipe to make delicious and healthy cupcakes by the time Avery’s first birthday rolls around.

Nope, won't make these again....
Nope, won’t make these again….

I refuse to offer cake made from refined white flour and am on a mission to impress! Cupcakes are a lot easier to manage and then Avery won’t have to smash a whole cake. Any thoughts/recipes you care to share?

7. Have a positive influence on my daughter. The importance of the father-daughter relationship is tremendously important, and I am adamant about being the best dad to Avery. By showing how a real man treats women with respect and always offering positive words, I will help set Avery to have great self-esteem and confidence. I hope it also helps in her choice of boys when that time comes. But lets not get too far ahead…

Playtime with dad is more important than you'd think!!
Playtime with dad is more important than you’d think!!

There we go, I have my work cut out for me, but that’s okay since I enjoy a good challenge. Right now, I think the hardest one will be perfecting a healthy cupcake recipe. What some think as healthy, may not be the same view I have as I can get pretty picky. Actually, I feel bad about using any flour because it’s obviously somewhat processed to get to that form. But, I will overcome this hurdle and find something!

Love our family!!
Love our family!!

Avery puts a smile on my face every day and I can’t say enough how much I am loving our way of life now! I love my wife and our daughter, and I hope to continue to put my best into this blog and most importantly, being the best dad and husband I can be!

How do you think I’m doing so far?

Do you set goals for yourself?

Any good cupcake recipes you care to share?

Crap My Baby Will Never Eat: Frozen Pizza Bites

Are we all so desperate that we have to rely on frozen processed food to feed our kids and ourselves? There are many products I can (and most likely will) speak on for being unhealthy snack options, but today I’m focusing on the ever popular frozen pizza rolls/bites. Mainly, Bagel Bites (H.J. Heinz) and Totino’s (General Mills).

Have you seen the Totino’s commercial with a mom on the phone with her hungry kids? I first saw it about a year and a half ago, but I’m sure there’s still something similar playing now.

The kids are looking for something in the freezer and are saying there’s nothing to eat, but of course Totino’s is right in front of their face. Apparently her kids are too dumb to see the bright yellow packaging until she tell them the exact location.  Then they are all happy and the kids go off to make their food-like substance pizza rolls.

Here is the nutrition info for their basic cheese party pizza…

….and that’s the one with the least ingredients!

The seemingly most popular pepperoni pizza rolls look even worse….

….and you know being little bites that it’s easy to go over the standard serving size.

Bagel Bites are the lesser of evils here, but still have no place being called real food. They even pit themselves against Totino’s in an ad trying to make us (the consumer) feel like the are the better (and only) option. No thanks to either.

And really? Are they assuming we’re stupid and only eating cheese? NO! Here are the rest of Bagel Bites’ ingredients:

Bleached Wheat Flour, Water, Mozzarella Cheese (Milk, Cultures, Salt, Enzymes)Tomato Puree (Tomato Paste, Water)Pepperoni (Pork, Beef, Salt, Spices, Water, Dextrose, Seasonings [Oleoresin of Paprika, Natural Spice Extractives, BHA, BHT, Citric Acid]Lactic Acid Starter Culture, Sodium Nitrate)2% or Less of: High Fructose Corn Syrup, Modified Cornstarch, Salt, Soybean Oil, Yeast, Whey Protein Concentrate (Milk)Nonfat Milk, Flavor Enhancer (Potassium Chloride, Ammonium Chloride, Yeast Extract, Maltodextrin [Corn]Lactic Acid, Citric Acid, Calcium Lactate, Natural Flavor)Methylcellulose, Citric Acid, Red Pepper, Natural Flavor, Dough Conditioner (Ascorbic Acid)Enzymes.”

Unfortunately, I am guilty of having these years ago and sure, they tasted good. But, I was also fat and out of shape. Now I make plenty of delicious snacks that taste great and offer wholesome nutrition I feel good about.

Right now we’re just starting to get Avery into eating solids through baby-led weaning, but soon she’ll be helping daddy cook in the kitchen and I can’t wait to teach her the benefits of real food. I will show her the frozen non-food “food” when we shop and explain how and why they are not a good food option.

Some, okay, a lot of people might call me anal when it comes to food, but why shouldn’t I be? You don’t know what you’re getting when someone is preparing food for you and I’m not okay with that. I am more at peace when I make everything myself and know exactly what goes into my meals.

The few times I do go out, it is rare to actually get what I order via special request. I don’t get why, because it’s usually asking to do less than the original menu item. If I get a salad, I ask for no dressing, cheese, croutons, and oils on the side. Sometimes that salad arrives with a seemingly extra amount of each!

I could make a full post over this (maybe I will), but for now my message is that I will not succumb to feeding our beautiful girl any processed junk. I realize many parents face time constraints, but obtaining healthier options is not that difficult.

This is why I’m working to start Avery on healthy veggies now and trying to put off the sweeter foods like bananas and other fruits. I will definitely share the joys of sweet fruits, but it’s veggies first. My mode of thinking is that she will grow up only knowing these nutritious foods and not craving something she can just throw in the microwave and mindless munch on while watching TV.

There will be more of these posts as Avery grows and I hope I am able to help parents strive to offer better, nutritious food for their little ones and themselves! I am already nervous about how I can keep her from having anything containing the worst ingredients in processed food when at a friend’s home or at school, but luckily, I have some time.

Back to the pizza rolls/bites; you can quickly make your own that can be frozen or cooked as needed with simple ingredients. Here are a few easy and healthy recipes to try with whole grain tortillas:

Tortilla Pizza

No-Bake Spinach Pizza Rolls

Another Easy Pizza Roll for the Road

What do you think about these types of foods?

Any tips on how to keep your little ones eating healthy when you aren’t with them?

Am I crazy?

If My Baby Could Tweet and Use Hashtags

It’s the coolest thing lately, using hashtags for everything! Every show has its name in hashtag at the top of the screen and people even talk in hashtag; me included.

I used to make fun of hashtag use and seriously got annoyed because I’ve always know it as a pound sign. Mainly because, IT IS!

When you get an automated voice on the phone, it doesn’t say “Please enter your password followed by the hashtag”. Not yet at least.

But, I have succumbed to its use and do it daily. #igiveup


So I started to wonder what my 6 month old daughter, Avery, would say in hashtag if she knew how. And thus, my post was born! Here’s my attempt to put hashtag words in Avery’s mouth for some of our recent pictures.


Dad called the hashtag a pound sign! #WTF






And picture number 1,033 for the day….#StopDad


I’m still here. #PhotoBomber


Go ahead, cat, make the first move. #KittyCompetition


I didn’t actually mean for you to make a move! #GiveMeTheRedDot


I have to feed myself with this?! #BringBackBoob


Just doin what I do. #RaspberrySelfie


It stinks. #WhoFarted


It was me. #BroccoliMadeMe


What, another picture session? #DontLookDontLookDontLook


Those stupid waving fingers always get me. #Crap


I think I just have to fart…..oops. #ChangeMyDiaper


Not all toys are fun. #IMissTheRedDot


Yeah mom, I love the bow. #Ppthhhppthhhppththpptthh


Go ahead, ask me another question you already know I can’t answer. #BabyProblems


Now that I use hashtags on a daily basis, I get how useful they are for social media and business, but there will always be a part of me that questions how and why the ever originated. But, like most things with technology, you just have to go with the flow.

What are your thoughts on using hashtags?

Any personal stories?

Don’t you call it the pound sign?