Here’s to making 20, something (or, happy birthday, Madison)

stormtrooper madison (2)I had to wait a day to get my favorite birthday present. That was 20 years ago.

Camdyn’s two goals Saturday come in a close second. What kid can score on her dad’s birthday? It’s just Camdyn doing Camdyn things. Hayden’s done it, too. It’s kind of Babe Ruthian to go out and deliver on a day and on a dime.

Sunday, Madison turned 20.

She nearly shared my birthday, did you know that? If her mama’s contractions hadn’t stopped around the time M*A*S*H* comes on TV, this would be a different post. That was 20 years ago now. The girls are rolling through all the milestones, 12, 13, 16, 17, 20 …

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Go Ask Daddy About Saxophone Glory, the Cost to Watch and Celestial Endings

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So, this one time, in marching band …

GAD GRAPHICWe got to play at halftime of a Colorado State football game in Ft. Collins. It was Band Day, and they played the University of New Mexico. I played baritone sax. I was first chair, I might add. The cheerleaders came with us.

Stick with me … this will tie together eventually.

Her name was Kaylie. (It was actually Shawna, but I don’t want to use her real name.) She was dreamy. Silky, curly brown hair, hazel eyes, braces. Sigh. The universe had a little fun that day and put Shawna – I mean, Kaylie – next to me on the bus.

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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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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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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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Guest Post: Laurie of The Adventure of Writing, on What to Bring to My Barbecue

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

When I started this blog years ago, I thought it would be the voice of dudes everywhere.

Boy, was I wrong.

Roughly 92% of my followers are women. Roughly the same percentage of male bloggers write like women. I feel like I write for women. Not like. Big difference. I won’t say things like squee! or totes adorbs or “said no one ever.” I think those aren’t manly terms.

My No. 1 fan in terms of comment engagement happens to be a bloke.

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Go Ask Daddy About Girl Presidents, Bustling Bakeries and Trucker Talk

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photo credit: Surf ! via photopin (license)

It’s quite an age we live in.

GAD GRAPHICTrue, I can’t take my kids to the airport to watch planes take off anymore. Sept. 11 took care of that.

But they’ve seen some great things in their lifetimes.

Even though their parents vote Republican, the significance of our first minority president isn’t lost on the girls. Gay marriage is on the table, and reality in some places. Hardly anyone gets chickenpox anymore. And my girls have even lived in the age of southern NHL teams winning the Stanley Cup, for Rod Brind’Amour’s sake.

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