3+ Uncommonly Good Gifts for a Happy Father’s Day

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Stormtrooper in a pickle at Brookgreen Gardens in Murrells Inlet, S.C.

I just wanted them to pretend.

Kids are busy, though. There are church camps and chicken fajitas with friends in restaurants way past the dinner rush. There’s a whole day spent with a friend from school, laying out at the pool and baking chocolate chip cookies.

Kids my kids’ age don’t have time to pretend anymore.

So I will. My friends at Uncommon Goods have the coolest stuff you could possibly get your dad (outside of one of those sweet Rockies jerseys.) Uncommon Goods has some uncommon traits going for them as a company, too, in an effort for sustainability.

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Go Ask (Someone Else’s) Daddy About Childhood Aspirations, Returns from Blog Vacations and How to Make a Bit of Sense of the Wacked-out Universe We Live in

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The kids get a break this week.

GAD GRAPHICCourtney of Baking in my Bathing Suit suggested I extend an invitation to the grown-up world for Go Ask Daddy. A handful of readers submitted questions, so there was enough to set the girls’ questions back on the shelf for today.

Mimi of Messy Mimi’s Meanderings asked me to tell the story of when I broke big-league news at a small-town paper.

I covered racing for the Hickory (N.C.) Daily Record. It was my second job out of college. A racing writer at a tiny paper doesn’t make enough to pay country club dues. Hell, it barely pays enough to buy a club sandwich. In the country.

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#A to Z Challenge: B is for Burgers & 3 Lessons I Learned During a Month Without Them (Plus, 3 Random Smartphone Pics)

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I told a co-worker that I staged a hunger strike because of her leaving the company.

BMost hellish 13 minutes of my life, I announced. This food-related sacrifice plays right into the mindfulness challenge I participated in for March. I softened it to be carnivore-friendly: March was a beef-free month for me.

Jen Schwartz’s challenge was to give up meat completely, like a liberal. I believe in miracles, yes, but also in the universe’s balance. I could no more easily go veg for more than a single bean tostada as an NBA star could expect to play every game on his team’s schedule when he’s healthy.

My own depravity – which challenged in duration the time Jesus spent in the wilderness that one time or the average drought between quality starts for an Arizona Diamondbacks starter – taught me.

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What an Invisible Civilization Would Learn About Us, in 6 Words

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I’m the king of the assinine question.

6 words graphic“What if Jeeps cost a nickel?” I asked my college friend, Bobby Keith – while we both were still in college. “I’d buy many Jeeps,” he answered. “What if packs of gum were $5,000?” I followed with. “Then I wouldn’t chew any gu – where the hell do you come up with this??” he asked.

Fair enough question.

The six words question for March isn’t asinine – but it is unusual. It comes from a wonderful source of thought-provoking questions from #Q4KIDZ. Grace and I have both contributed to the question pot, which spits one out daily for you and your kids.

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Dad in the Kitchen: Brown & White Sugar Waffles (For People of All Colors)

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I love me some symbolism.

Like, red in the Colorado flag, to symbolize the state’s red soil. Or the Mandala, to stand for eternal harmony. Or even a blue star on the side of a silver helmet. This stands for a team allergic to playoff victories.

Symbolism isn’t lost on me in the kitchen, either.

Here’s the recipe for my Brown and White Sugar Waffles. They’re representative of my children, actually, part brown like dad, half white, like mom. In perfect harmony, ironed to light and crispy perfection, with a hint of vanilla.

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7 Random Smartphone Photos, and a Meat-free Challenge

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photo credit: Sr. F First Order via photopin (license)

I used to fill the Wednesday gaps when I didn’t have a guest post lined up with a random assortment of photos from my dilapidated Android phone.

Sometimes, they’d include a shot of my dilapidated car, which is embroiled in a long-haul challenge with my dilapidated phone to see who can last the longest. They probably have wagered also on whether they can outlast me, too.

We’re all still alive and (mostly) kicking, and I have lots of great guest posts and #GirlsRock interviews to get me through weeks and weeks of blogging.

I miss the photos, though. I’ll bring them back, at the first of every month. I’m also involved in the 12 Month Mindful Challenge. It’s Jen Schwartz’s creation, on the Elephant Journal. March is Meat-free. (eek!)

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Who We’d Switch Places with (and What We’d do), in 6 Words

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Catching up on blog and work while Grace kicks ass in training. Huntersville, NC.

How great would it be … not to be me.

6 words graphicWho hasn’t thought this? In those moments we’re out of gas, out of time or out of toilet paper (or all three). At times when we follow our favorite adorable pro golfer just to see she has three names now, just like those old-school 80s Olympic sprinters.

I like being me, though.

So much so that I would hate to not be me, to miss out on late-night ginger snaps and Sunlounger and Cher Lloyd on Pandora. On coaching my girls, raising my kids or writing my blog. Did I mention ginger snaps?

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Go Ask Daddy About Device Diversions, Writing Weaknesses and Couponing Questions That Shall Never Be Asked

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photo credit: v_mats D16B2649-1 via photopin (license)

A kid will call a dad out.

GAD GRAPHICThe younger the kid, the rawer (is that a word?) the call-out. I’ve navigated three daughters through the unfiltered years, without many stings. There was that day on the Barbie doll aisle with one daughter, who, noting Mattel’s plastic diversity, asked, “why would I want a black Barbie, dad?”

I sailed through that one with honesty, not damage control.

“I think little girls like to play with dolls, no matter what,” I explained. “But sometimes, we want toys that look like us. These dolls look like different people.” And it was true. I remember complaining that there were no Mexican kids on Peanuts.

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Our Kids’ Eating Habits, in 6 Words

photo credit: Stéfan via photopin cc
photo credit: Stéfan via photopin cc

Food.

It’s central to this page you’re on now. If this were a physical page, it would have pizza sauce stains. Butter splotches. A damp ring from a Coke Zero can.

When you have kids, food is central to your existence. And the bigger they get, the more they want. And the more sophisticated their tastes get.

The measure of whether a child is still a baby lies in her palate. If she’s still all chicken nuggets, mac and cheese and anything drenched in ranch, she’s a baby.

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