Archive for the Parenting Category

A Father’s Perspective

Posted in Parenting with tags , , , , , , on January 27, 2014 by hendu

I have a four and a half-year old daughter.  I am blessed to have her in my life but there are some unfortunate side effects to having a young girl in your house.

One of them: Princesses.  Lots and lots of princesses.

To go along with the absurd amount of princess gear, princess movies.

Now, I love how Avery goes and dresses up as; and pretends to be a princess.  The girl loves her gowns, tiaras, shoes and septers.  She also loves her princess movies.  She knows almost all of them by heart.  Seriously, name a movie and she can tell you the characters, the plot, the casting director, the key grip and the lighting director.  I think obsessed is a good word for it.  

That’s where the problem lies.  Those old Disney princess movie, while entertaining to a young impressionable girl, I believe they send the wrong message.  In all the movies, the princess comes across as the victim, always needing a man to come and solve her problems.  Or changing who she is just for a certain prince.  Seriously, Cinderella can’t stand up to her sisters and needs a miracle to doll herself up.  Sleeping Beauty, needs a prince to come and kiss her and save her.  Snow White was told NOT to eat the damn apple, did anyway and needed a Prince to come save her.  Ariel needs to change who she is to attract a guy. These messages are so wrong and it has been that way for decades.  From Sleeping Beauty all the way to the Little Mermaid princesses have been relying on a man to save them from evil.

Thanks to the past two Disney releases, that seems to be changing.  Both Brave and Frozen have central girl figures that one: took take no crap from anyone and two: don’t need a guy to save them.  Also, while the earlier movies always focused on the princess falling in love with a prince and her relationship with them, these two movies have a much more important and healthier focus.  The love of a mother and daughter and the bond and love between two sisters.

Now, both my wife and I try to teach our daughter how to be a strong independent girl.  We try to teach her how to do things on her own and not to rely on others to solve her problems.  These teachings are great and all, but if the movies that she watches send a different message, how well do these lessons stick?  This is why I love love love Brave, Frozen and their stories.  

Both these princesses are tough, independent strong-willed young girls.  They take problems on themselves and don’t wait for Prince Charming or daddy to come and rescue them.  I think these movies finally reflect where society has been and is heading too.  I have no idea what it was like to raise girls ten or twenty years ago but I have to imagine this is a better age to do so.  There are so many strong, smart and secure women to be seen as role models and if that can start at a young age with Princess’ like Merida braveand Anna frozenthen Avery has a head start on life.

Thanks Disney for finally catching up with the times and giving young girls movie characters that aren’t wussy princess’ or evil women.

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Why?

Posted in Avery, Parenting with tags , , , , , on November 29, 2011 by hendu

Why you reading this?  Well, because I really like this blog?  Well….why?  Because I think the writer is brilliant?  Why?  Probably because he has a grasp on reality and knows exactly what his readers want to read about?  Why?  I dunno, maybe because he is just a phenomenal human being.   Oh…..okay.

That would be a sample of a conversation you may have with Avery while reading this.  Of course your answers may differ a bit than they did in my head, but so what, it’s my blog.

Anyway, that’s the stage she’s in now.  Everything is “Why?”  I get that it is the way that two-year-olds learn but good god does it get irritating quick.  Some of you may know that I am not the most patient guy in the world so a stretch of this type of questioning can get old fast.  Shockingly though, I think I have handled it pretty well.  We’ll play along for a little bit, answering as much as we want.  When it gets to that point, and I think as parents, we all know what that point is, we flip the script.  Once we start asking her why. she quickly stops.  Childish?  Yes, but sometimes very necessary and frankly I’m above nothing.

I guess from here on out. it’s a battle of wills.  This could get ugly.

Baby Making

Posted in baseball, committment, family, life, new baby, Parenting with tags , , , , on August 11, 2010 by hendu

Is it just me or have you noticed a lot of baseball players and their wives having babies during the season?  I know that on the Red Sox in the past year, the Pedroia’s, Buchholz’s and Lestor’s all welcomed a new bundle of joy during the season.  Mark Teixiera missed last nights game and will miss the rest of the Texas series to be with his wife for the birth of their third child.  Not like a series against a potential play-off foe is a big deal or anything.  I also see it happen a lot during other seasons. 

Here is what irks me.  These professional athletes are so in-tuned with their bodies and their schedules.  They are creatures of habits during the season and any little blip in that schedule could throw them off.  I’m sure that having a newborn in his house affected Lestor in his last few starts.  Hell, I was tired last year and I didn’t have the burden of starting major league games.  During the off-season these players set up such a rigid timeline to get them ready for the season.  I think it is time to add a new task:  knocking your wife up. 

First, don’t do it right when the season is over.  That is setting up the whole mid-season time off issue.  Here’s the timeline:  get your wife pregnant right before the season (baseball players in Feb. or March for example) therefore your wife gives birth in Oct. or Nov. and yo don’t have to take anytime off during the season, you re home for her when she needs you the most and you get to spend the first three or four months with your new child.

When you think about, it’s not too much to ask of these players to schedule their family life around the seasons of our favorite teams.  Really guys, stop being so selfish.

Jason Hendry is a morning director at NBC Connecticut.  He is an avid sports fan who also likes to dabble in politics, music, food, movies and other aspects of pop culture.  His true passions in life are his family and baseball.

Follow me on twitter: http://twitter.com/hendu11

HAPPY FATHER's DAY

Posted in Avery, family, Parenting, Uncategorized with tags on June 18, 2010 by hendu

This blog has been taken over for today and is being ghost written by someone else.  I just wanted to take a moment to wish all of our new dad’s and about to be new dads a Very Happy Father’s Day.

I’d also like to think about our dads and grandads that are no longer with us.  We are very lucky though because we actually have 3 great dads between us and it’s been really great watching them all transition into the Grandpa role.  Ralph, Tom, and Fred we are very lucky to have you in our lives and love you very much!

But the real reason I commandeered today’s blog was so that I could pay tribute to the author-even though he has no qualms about telling you how great he is in his opinion ;), I felt for once, he should get the opportunity to have a nice blog written about him.

So as I have watched you transition into fatherhood, I feel more blessed everyday.  You are an amazing father and have grown immensely.  You’ve become more patient and calm.  I love to watch you play with Avery and see the ever mounting love you have for her.  It always brings a smile to my face to see how much you love her, and my heart just melts seeing you two interact.  I get to laugh when Avery is as stubborn or more so than you and it makes you crazy.  From the man who was nervous about having a daughter, I love how totally smitten you are.  I am blessed to have a caring compassionate husband and father to our daughter.  I very much appreciate all you do for us- like cooking every night, and cleaning up so I can have a few more minutes with Avery at the end of the day.  I am very fortunate to have an equal partner and love how we both split all the responsibilities.  I think our love has grown stronger because of it, and I know we will always work through every thing together, no matter what the cards say.   So my love, I hope you have a wonderful, first official father’s day, Avery and I love you very much.

Eye of the Beholder?

Posted in Avery, family, Parenting with tags , , on April 30, 2010 by hendu

Is that where beauty truly lies?  Or does our view of beauty get skewed a bit. 

My daughter got me thinking about this.  When was the last time you heard a parent say “Man, my baby is just flat-out ugly!”  Never?  Me too.  All parents think that their child is the cutest and that’s the way it should be but is their view skewed by love or do they really see their child differently than the rest of the world?  Now, I think we all can agree that these babies are ugly:     .  I’m sure that they are loved to death by their parents, like they should be, but do they view them differently than the rest of the public?  Do they see a different face? 

Now I know that you are never supposed to tell a mother and father that they have ugly offspring nor should they never admit in public that their babies are ghastly.  In private though do they ever have that conversation?  Just between the parents does the word “ugly” ever come up? 

Now, I know that I think my daughter is gorgeous    , but that’s my view.  I swear I’m not fishing for compliments, these are serious thoughts.  Does the look different to the rest of the world.  Are my eyes adjusting her look to see something that may or may not be there.  Do our brains mess with our vision so we see our children in a different light than others? 

I don’t know, maybe they are just all breathtaking in their individual ways.

A Must Have for Parents

Posted in new baby, Parenting, Uncategorized with tags , , , on February 16, 2010 by hendu

So far, seven months into this parental experiment we have discovered two essential things that we can’t live without.  The first is a baby play center.  Something we can put Avery in and let her play as we do stuff around the house.  The second is this:

A baby food maker from Beaba.  Now, it is a tad pricey ($150 @ Williams Sonoma) but it has already paid for itself.  Well, actually it was free but you get the idea.  New parents:  register for this.  Make it a priority.  You can make a lot of food for relatively cheap and it is all fresh.  We make batches of peas, carrots, squash, sweet potatoes, etc and

(click on picture for website)

freeze them in ice-cube trays for future use.  It takes about twenty minutes for a batch to be completed and you have food for a week.   The best part, you know where the food came from.  We are able to make all organic veggies for Avery.  Not only is the price from homemade to store bought huge, but the taste difference is substantial.

It is idiot-proof too.  Even the most sleep deprived parental being can run this thing.  Dice the food, add water and food then turn the switch on.  That’s it.  It has made the introduction of real food a real joy. 

Now, I’m not a spokesman for the company, just a satisfied Dad who felt I needed to pass this info along to other potential or new parents.  It even comes with its’ own recipe book.  Normally I’m not a huge fan of French products unless it’s wine, champagne or cheese, but this is a home run.

What's are We Becoming?

Posted in basketball, Parenting, rants with tags , , on January 5, 2010 by hendu

Are we raising kids to be too soft? 

Are we making their lives too easy that when they are bound to face any hardship, they won’t know what to do?

Last night, I was working at my high school basketball game.  During the very competitive and physical game the visiting fans started to make noise.  Pretty normal, except it was when one of our kids was shooting foul shots.  Now, they weren’t yelling.  There was no name calling or foul language being used.  They were simply banging their feet on the bleachers.

I thought nothing of this.  If anything, I think the noise would force someone to concentrate more on the task at hand.  Well, the principal thought different.  She went over and told the fans to knock it off.  She came back over to me and told me she doesn’t want that type of stuff going on.  In her words, she said “It was rude.”

Rude????  It’s a freakin’ basketball game!!!  How is that noise any worse than the other noise made during the game?  It’s not a tea party folks, it’s a sporting event.  Rude, when was the last time you used the word “rude” to describe anything going on at a basketball game.  What they were doing is what is done in high school gyms across the country.  Fans are there to cheer for their team and root against the opponent.  It wasn’t malicious, it was just stomping feet.  Distracting?  Yes.  Rude?  C’mon now.

It’s time to take the kid gloves off people.  Let’s start treating our teenage kids more like adults.  Life is full of distraction, start learning how to deal with it now. 

They’ll be better off, trust me.