February 28, 2012

I DON'T Want a Pony

I must seriously be the worst parent in the world.

Nothing else could explain why I didn't get MY sons entire preschool class a gift for HIS half birthday.

Thanks SO MUCH Anthony M.
Is this what it has come to?  As to not upset any kids in school nowadays we have to celebrate half birthdays, AND we have to get EVERYONE a half birthday party favor?  I don't get it. Maybe it's because I suck as a parent, or as a dad I just don't think about or care about those sort of things.

Would my son really be that upset if he didn't have a celebration of his half birthday?  Probably not, but I know his feelings WOULDN'T be hurt if he did not receive the requisite pencil or box of crayons as a parting gift.  Do these people know how many pencils we have?  Why must we continue to do this?

I fear that we are falling into a vicious cycle where we as parents have to keep up with everyone else.

You know one parent gets the kids something in September, and then everyone else has to follow in line and get each subsequent kid something exponentially better, until finally some kid who has his birthday in May, has a parent who is giving out motorcycles and gold bars.

It really needs to stop.

It starts with crayons and ends with ?

I know that no parent wants to be the first to put an end to this sort of thing because that would make them look BAD; but someone has to take the fall.  I am willing to be that guy.  If I don't stand up now and say that your child will not be getting a sticker book on my son's half birthday, I fear that it will just continue to spiral out of control, until eventually one of my boys comes home with a pony.

Please join me, make it stop. 

I don't have the room in my house for a pony.

John Willey - Daddy's in Charge?


February 23, 2012

Hey Look at the Wombat!

I realize this is a Panda

I think we are over zoos. Sad I know, but it's just too much work anymore trying to get the kids attention. How many times can you fake excitement over some animal that you have never heard of, and get the same blank stare. Or even worse the, "can we go now?"

I don't get it.

These animals all cramped up in their pens are so exciting. I mean how many times are you really ever going to so an Oryx or a Yak, and live to tell about it? I'm beginning to think that none of these animals actually exist outside of a zoo.

It always seems to me that going to zoo is just a very expensive excuse to buy popcorn. It seems to be the only thing nowadays that get my kids attention. Scratch that, there is ONE animal that will get their attention, Swedish fish. Yeah, if the animal doesn't come in the form of sugar, it's probably not going to get my kids attention. I think my kids got a bigger kick out of the elephant in the bag of animal crackers that they did seeing the ACTUAL elephant.

If my kids want to see a polar bear they can just YouTube it. It's basically the same as seeing it in its fake arctic scene. I mean you are not fooling anyone with the fake logs and the shipwreck. Seeing them in their pens will never be as amazing as actually seeing them in their natural habitat. But I don't foresee myself ever going to the great white north and doing that.

Have you ever caught yourself showing way too much excitement over a wombat? It's not natural. I do the same thing with trains and planes, the kids don't care anymore about those things. They used to, but I can't tell if my overblown excitement is because I am grasping for those days or just doing it out of habit. I am sure there will be other things they get excited about in the future, but right now the wombat is not one of them.

John Willey - Daddy's in Charge?


February 21, 2012


I had no idea that my son was a Superhero.

I knew that Tyler was super cool, I mean he is my son after all, a chip off the old block. But a Superhero?

Tuesday nights are swim class nights for us. We don't live in a warmer climate where it is easy to access a pool year round, so we head to the local YMCA once a week.  I feel that swim classes are most important in the winter months when kids aren't swimming everyday.  I would hate to get to summer time and have them just sink to the bottom of the pool because they hadn't worked on their skills for over six months.  The boys seem to really enjoy it, which is the most important thing.

So swim classes are important, but that is not what this post is about.  It's about something that happens AFTER swim class, something in the locker room.  It's where a transformation takes place turning Tyler from a mere mortal child into that of a SUPER child:

Why Tyler decides to do this every time we go is beyond me.  But why do kids do half the stuff they do, because they can.  At least he is getting himself dressed right?  Just getting your clothes on would be quite boring.

If you noticed at the end of that video my other son Carter walked into the locker; he always has to copy his older brother. The only difference though is that two minutes after he walked, in he came out with NO clothes on.  It leads me to the question, is Carter a superhero all of the time, or is his super suit his birthday suit?  

John Willey - Daddy's in Charge?


February 20, 2012

My Little Ninjas

We don't normally get these sort of things done, but when you are as big a fan of Legos as our family is, we thought why not. How often do you get to Legoland and how often can you get your kids turned into Lego Ninjas?

John Willey - Daddy's in Charge?


February 16, 2012

Star Wars Review... Starring Legos

Here we are outside the theater
It seems like every few years George Lucas comes up with some way to rerelease his Star Wars movies. I can't tell you how many times we have watched the saga.  Anyone who has boys will tell you that there gets to be a point where your world revolves around it. My boys are no different, although in recent months they have started to grow apart from Star Wars, which is fine by me; it can get to be a little much at times. Well now that the movie was being introduced in 3D, we thought that this would be a great opportunity to see it again, on the big screen.  I mean George Lucas is a genius when it comes to special effects, so there is no way that he could screw this up... or could he?

When George Lucas decides to make an original movie and stops pawning this Star Wars saga off as something new, someone let me know.  Until then he gets no more of my money.  He already has enough of it.  

John Willey - Daddy's in Charge?


February 13, 2012

23 minutes

I hung up.

I couldn't take it anymore.

The anticipation of someone on the other end of the phone actually picking it up and saying hello to me, started to drive me crazy.  I had no idea what to do anymore, do you hang up or just sit there knowing full well that the moment you do hang up is the exact moment where someone on the other end of the line finally picks up your call.  It's too much to take.

Did they forget about me?  They must see the little red light flashing knowing that I am taking up one of their precious phone lines.  Or are they sitting there knowing that my life is sitting in the balance just waiting, hoping that they will pick up my call.  They have the power, and I am most certainly at their mercy.  They know that, it's why I am on hold.

After a certain period of time it gets embarrassing.  You just know they keep records for the longest anyone has been placed on hold.  Do I want to be that guy?  The guy that is at the top of the chart?  The guy that sat there for over an hour?  I don't know because it's not funny on my end. I JUST WANT SOMEONE TO PICK UP THE PHONE!!!

If I hang up up I am just going to have to go through this again.  Who knows, maybe next time they will answer my call right away?  Or I could be placed on hold again, and just have to sit there AGAIN.  What the hell is going on on there other end of the phone I will never know, but sometimes it's just too much to take, and you are forced to make that decision.

23 minutes and I hung up.

John Willey - Daddy's in Charge?


February 10, 2012

The Dentist... Starring Legos

I never know what to expect on our twice yearly visit to see the dentist.  The kids never seem to put up much of a fuss, but you never know when something is going to happen.  Carter normally does well at places like the dentist or the doctors office, but just last week I took him to get a shot he needed for school.  He was fine when getting the shot, but after he was not a happy camper.  He started screaming at me and punching me and telling me that he didn't want to do that.  Who could blame him; getting shots is no easy thing to do.  So when I had to take Carter to get a cavity filled, I feared that it wouldn't go well.

In the future I will make sure to bush his teeth a little better, I would hate having to go through this every six months.

John Willey - Daddy's in Charge?


February 8, 2012

Stripping Labels

I've decided to unclassify myself as a stay home dad. I've grown tired of the label, in fact I've grown tired of all labels all together. I've been at the job for a little over a year and a half an I can honestly say that the term Stay at Home Dad just bugs me.

Why do I have to be labeled as such when someone asks what I do for a living? I am first and foremost a dad, and everything else is none of your business.  If you see me with my kids anywhere at any time of day, don't assume that I have taken the day off to spend time with them.  Look at me as a father who is enjoying being with two of the people he cares about the most.  Why we are at the park or grocery store together should be of no concern to you. I am a dad and that's it.

Why does a mom that works have to be labled a working mom?  You don't see dads who are announced as working dads.  Can we all just please get over this?  My wife works; works her ass off really, probably one of the hardest working people that I have ever seen.  She is not a working mom, she is a mom who happens to work.  Just like there are dads that work, but for some reason we look at my wife and label her a working mom, as if that is some sort of bad thing.

Why do we label people?

Are we any less of a parent with these labels attached to us?  I would think not. Regardless of what you do, you only want what is best for your kids.  What role each of you plays in your family shouldn't matter to anyone else but yours.

So from now on, if you see me at the store or my wife getting on the bus to go into the city, instead of labeling us as a stay at home dad and working mom, just look at us as PARENTS doing what they know is right for their kids.

John Willey - Daddy's in Charge?


February 6, 2012

The Nose Knows

Sometimes I feel really bad for my older son Tyler.  His younger brother Carter has these amazing abilities that he just can't seem to master.  Whether it's crossing his eyes, or wiggling his eyebrows, Tyler has not been able to match the incredible talents of his younger brother.  What can I say, Carter has been blessed with superhero type skills that will certainly take him far in life.

Take for example his ability to wiggle his nose.

I am certainly not surprised by this, as it seems that Carter can do pretty much anything that I can do.  He may look like his mother but when it comes to this simple life skills, this boy is all mine.  What this will mean for him later in life who knows, I can't say that I landed my wife due to my ability to wiggle my nose and ears.  Or maybe I did. 

Tyler on the other hand has the same abilities, or the lack there of, as his mother; he looks like me but he acts like my wife. 

Clearly this is something that we are going to have to work on.  I would hate for him to be put in a situation later in life where he was asked to perform this simple task.  

I've said this before but it really amazes sometimes that these two kids can have the same parents, yet not be have the ability to do the same things.  They really do pick up the best traits from both us.  Like wiggling your nose, some are more important than others. 

What do you notice about your kids?    

John Willey - Daddy's in Charge?


February 2, 2012

The Bully... Starring Legos

It's every father fear that their kid is going to come home crying because they were picked on by a bully. My son is only seven years old and he is the sweetest nicest kid with many great friends.  When he got off the bus the other day crying I knew that it could only mean one thing, he had been hit by a bully.  I already knew who the kid was before my son told me and I wasn't happy about it.  As a parent, many things raced through my mind.  Should I go down the block and take the kid out myself, should I talk to the parents who I know don't give a damn anyway, or should I hire someone to hurt him? Before I go any further I just want to say that I would never hurt a child, but seeing my son crying, the emotions you get as a parent can lead you to do crazy things.  Someone has to teach this bully a lesson.

I hope that teaches this little punk a lesson to not mess with my son.

John Willey - Daddy's in Charge?


February 1, 2012

Failing as a Dad?

I am not always proud of the parent that I am.

Sometimes I just wish I could erase huge blocks of time from my life.  I don't want to remember the half hour screaming matches or the times I wish my kids were not around.  They can be tough to deal with sometimes.  Being a parent isn't always peaches and rose petals, but it seems too much of the time is spent in arguments over clothes or what shoes to wear.  It seems lately that I am remembering too many of those moments and if I am, what are the kids thinking.

I don't want them to think that I am some monster.

They really are the best kids
The frustration boils over sometimes and when it comes out, it comes out.  Normally if you get mad or frustrated with something you have an avenue to calm yourself down, but when it's just you and one of your kids, what are you supposed to do?

I yell, and I yell way too much.

I just can't think of anything else to do and I know that this is not the best course of action because it's only going to make the situation worse.  Picture a four year old who can't make up his mind over what shirt to wear, he's frustrated and angry already, and then throw in a parent screaming at the top of his lungs.  If I was a four year old I surely wouldn't like it and I would probably scream and cry a little louder.  That in turn makes me scream a little louder, which makes everything that much worse.

I would never do anything to harm these kids, but it frustrates me to no end when situations just spiral out of control.  How DO you control yourself when you have a kid crying hysterically and the only thing you want him to do is to stop?

They are great kids 99% of the time, but too often I'm remembering that other 1%.

I am constantly learning how to be a better parent, but sometimes it seems like I am failing the class.

John Willey - Daddy's in Charge?