What I’ve learnt as a Stay at home Dad

Mark Fatherhood, Parenting, Popular 6 Comments

Things I’ve learnt (and not) this week…

People who work are grumpy.

I’m not suggesting all people, but those of us at home during the day say hello when we pass in the street you know. Well, unless you live at No 42.

Every day for a year I’ve said hello. Nothing. Every day I swear I’ll not bother tomorrow. I do.

Then, last week, a grunt. Maybe he was clearing his throat.
I thought I’d be smug with success but I wasn’t. I thought I’d won but I hadn’t. He had.

I felt empty. Where would my morning angst come from now?

I’m now passing with hands in pocket for fear I’ll go in for the handshake. I wouldn’t, at least I don’t think I would….


Our post lady is lovely.

She whistles while she works.

I’m not sure which is more worrying though, that my boys can unlock the front door or that she seemingly accepts a toddlers dinosaur drawing as a signature?


We’ll take in your deliveries.

Couriers talk, they must do.

In the space of a week our radius has increased from immediate neighbours to any Manchester postcode.

What I’ve learnt is to be cautious of the empty handed. Small parcels are carried under the arm, a courier holding nothing means you’re about to take delivery of something requiring a forklift to move!


My boys are cute.

That’s not my opinion, it’s the standard opening gambit of every doorstep seller whether they’re pushing Gas or God.
On a good day they’re right. On a bad day they’re quite clearly lying. There’s nothing cute about two half-dressed toddlers fighting over a broken biscuit in a sea of snotty tears.


I can crochet.

The cynic in me thinks it wasn’t a coincidence my big sister taught me too close to Christmas for all my presents to be crocheted, but be warned, if you tell me you’re pregnant then 9 months is plenty of notice for me to knock up a badly crocheted hat, or scarf, or who am I kidding, tie.


What I’ve not learnt is …


How to explain molecular structures to a toddler.

Whoever thought it appropriate to buy the boys an adult medical encyclopedia need to come back and explain DNA to them because I’ll be damned if I can!


Never to leave a toddler in the car with the keys.

Nothing attracts attention in an Asda car-park quite like a toddler screaming louder than the car alarm he accidentally set off when he pushed the central locking button.

It probably looked worse by a crazy bearded man trying to entice him to open the door with a biscuit but what was I meant to do?


Not to attempt a conversation with a mannequin.

To be fair I’m sure she smiled at me, and she did look familiar, but I’m pretty sure she didn’t reply to my initial “hello”, therefore to follow up with “I’m not bad thanks” crosses the line between a genuine mistake and being a mentalist.


Close the curtains.

It’s all well and good joining in with Tree Fu Tom moves, but when will I learn that people passing the window can’t see the boys busting their own moves below the windowsill. To the passerby I just look like a weirdo performing some manic combination of Tai Chi and Jedi!


Vegetables can be dangerous.

It’s not clever to try and hide peas inside pasta tubes.

In theory it seemed a good idea; in practice I’d given the boys pea-shooters. If that wasn’t bad enough, in their excitement, any premature intake of breath only served to choke them on a pea back-draft?

Comments 6

  1. I don’t know what is more worrying, that you did leave the keys in the car or that I swear you have done it before and not learnt from the first time? And I seem to remember you lost a full doughnut to the last occasion, clearly something which stuck with me.
    I would love you to try a handshake, just for the look on his face. Brilliant.
    Nelly xxxx

  2. That is a lot of learning. I’m taking the peashooter tip away with me as I thought it was a brilliant idea till I got to the end 😉

  3. hi. i love your blog design! sent here by Kevin. It’s a terrific blog.

    Mark replied ….

    Thank-you, really enjoyed reading yours too.

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