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:
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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!
- 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!
- 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!
- 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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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…
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!
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?