Mike Dariano

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What does a stay at home dad do all day? January 2014 edition

I've written these posts for a few other months, but forgot to last November and December. Those months were busy and atypical in all the thing we were running around and doing. Here's what a stay at home dad did on January 30th, 2014:

Wake up at 630, thirty minutes later than I wanted. I know that anything I want to do alone has the best chance of happening in the morning - when I'm alone. After I made coffee and my brain was ready for anything beyond moving my feet it was time to read a few emails and get my daughters up for school. At 715 everyone was awake, dressed, and munching on granola bars in the kitchen. I take our daughters to school, so we don't need to leave the house for another fifteen minutes, but some kids have already been on the school bus for half an hour. I'm thankful for this and it reminds me that maybe the largest perk of being a stay at home parent is the lower levels of stress in your house.

By 750 we've returned from dropping my older daughter off at school and my younger daughter is in the shower. I don't know why my kids love the shower, but they do. Their shower time is only limited by how much hot water there is. During this time I book a hotel room for my brother's wedding, and buy Book of Mormon tickets for when the show comes to Columbus Ohio. I also check on a credit alert that fraudulent activity may have occurred in my wife's name. Thankfully it was nothing and easily solved by ordering a free credit report. I also wash the bathing child, fold laundry, and tidy the kitchen.

At 830 my younger daughter is cleaned, dried, and dressed and she wants to lay down in my bed. We cuddle for forty-five minutes, listening to an audiobook of her choice. It's taken me almost six years, but I finally can cuddle with my kids. When they were younger and wanted to lay down, I would say they should do that by themselves. Why did I need to be there I reasoned. There were things I wanted to do, things I thought I should do, things I felt guilty for not doing. Now I enjoy the moments of cuddling because in six years I've gotten a sliver of perspective. These wonderful kids of mine won't be kids forever.

After resting for a bit, the clock strikes 915 and we're out of bed to play dolls, find treasures, and draw together. For some reason we set up in the bathroom but we have fun doing it. At 1045 we get back in the car to pick up the older kid from school and by 1120 we are home again.

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