New Here, huh?

pat and kepleyWe are college buddies who both became stay-at-home dads. Pat likes cookies and Kepley thinks he is smarter than everyone else. We get along.

This blog is for dads who stay-at-home, are considering staying at home, work part or full time, or just anybody looking for a laugh; we want to help cultivate this growing dad community.

We are not “Mr. Mom,” so we do our best at being just a dad. It is a full time job. Twenty-four hours a day. Seven days a week.

If this is your first time visiting, click here to learn more. Listen to us tell our story on the Life of Dad After Show Podcast by clicking here.

**Disclaimer** We are not experts.

pull ups

How to Potty Train a Girl

pull ups
Potty training my son was easy. At least in the sense that my wife was home on maternity leave with our daughter and since I’m an at-home dad, we were able to split duties (literally) between the new baby girl and potty training our 21 month-old boy. We tried to use one of those 3-day training methods (ok, it was really 5 days, don’t judge me), and when we got frustrated, one of us took over watching him while the other grabbed the carpet cleaner. That’s how 3-day potty training methods go: watch the kid, clean the carpet, watch the kid, clean the couch, clean the rug, clean the chair, rinse, wash, repeat. Ok, now that I think of it, it wasn’t “easy” at all. It was actually super frustrating.

Fast-forward 20 months later and it was time to start thinking about potty training our daughter. I started to have flashbacks and nightmares and one night I woke up in a cold sweat. This time, it’s just me. All me. ONLY ME?!? My wife would be at work and not at home to tag team when our daughter peed all over the floor? Who would get the carpet cleaner?? And who was going to make lunch for the kids and me while I focused on potty training her?!? I had to face reality. There was no way I was going to even attempt a 3-day method. Contrary to popular belief, I am not entirely crazy– although my wife would beg to differ.

I drank some coffee, calmed down a bit, and had an epiphany: if I trained my boy, I could train my girl no matter what method or system I chose. I remembered how cute he was when we would both stand up and race to see who could finish first. OH! And all those times in public bathrooms when I could get him to just pull his pants down, lean in, and let it flow? It wasn’t that hard. This will be fine, I will be fine, WE will be fine! And then it hit me. She’s not a boy, she’s a girl, girls can’t stand up, what are you thinking?!? I have no idea how to potty train a girl, especially by myself!!! Abort mission, abort mission, ABORT MISSION!!!

There had to be a better way

Continue reading

pull-ups potty partnership

Potty Training Tips to Save Your Life

Pull-Ups Potty Partnership
Potty training your children is fun (said no parent, ever). We trained our first child, The Understudy, at 21 months while my wife was home on maternity leave with our second child. We used a three-day method and tag-teamed our way through five full days (three days didn’t work) of frustration, wet floors, and many bottles of wine. Now that it’s time to potty train our second child, The Starlet, I realized that I wouldn’t have my wife around to tag out this time and I knew that if I brought up the same training to her she might kill me in my sleep. At the 11th hour, I found a whole new way to potty train and keep my sanity (and my life). No, it isn’t a bigger wine rack, it’s the Pull-Ups® Potty Partnership.

After researching the Pull-Ups Potty Partnership program and spending several weeks incorporating the program into our daily routines, I can honestly say it is leaps and bounds better than the frustration of the three-day training methods. It’s a new program geared towards bringing your child in to the process as a true partner, tailoring it to his or her unique personality and how they learn, and most importantly, working together to accomplish this huge milestone in their life. Oh yeah, and the frustration level is miniscule in comparison to what we went through in those traumatizing five days with The Understudy.

As we worked together, we came up with some tips that will help parents and kids not end up in the corner in the fetal position; wet and covered in stinky-squishy solids. So take a seat on your porcelain throne and learn all about how I potty trained The Starlet and saved my life. Continue reading


The Starlet Project: Weeks 1-5

For The Starlet’s first year, I completed a project where I took a video of her every single day and put it together into a documentary showcasing 1 second every day. It was an extremely intense project, but the end result was totally worth it. For her second year, I wanted to try another project, but one that would also help me exercise my new love of photography.

I decided to do a 52 Week Photo Project, taking a photo every week for a year. This project would focus on The Starlet in some way each week. So, without further ado, here is the first 5 weeks of the project.

#1/52 “The Beginning”


I finally got those beautiful little eyes right where I needed them.

I feel like I can never get a great shot of The Starlet. There’s always something in the way, she looks away at the last second, or I’m just not good enough at capturing the shot in time. This one was exactly what I wanted. She was playing hard to shoot, but I finally got those beautiful little eyes right where I needed them. It’s going to be a fun year trying to capture her for this 52 week project.

*Canon Rebel T3i * 50mm 1.8 lens * ISO 100 * Aperture f/1.8 * Shutter Speed 1/400*

#2/52 “The Halloween Flower” Continue reading

But Daddy Why?: The Santa Special

In episode 7 of the “But Daddy Why?” podcast, Pat and his buddy, Eric from DiaryDad’s Dadventures, answer the question, “But daddy why do we have to be good for Santa?” It’s all about the creepiness of Santa watching you while you sleep, and the origin of St. Nick and his partner, Krampus, who kidnaps little kids and leaves switches for parents. Merry Christmas!


Check out the two teaser videos where Pat interviews kids to find out what they know about being good, songs about Santa, and sweet old, Krampus.


You can also listen and subscribe to the podcast Continue reading


Baby’s First Year in 60 Seconds


When The Starlet was born I wanted to do something extraordinary for her. Little did I know that the idea was utterly insane. My goal was to get video of her every single day for a year. Every. Single. Day. For a year. Then, I would put together a video with one second from every day. Every. Single. Day. Continue reading

But Daddy Why? Podcast Debut

but daddy whyA new podcast has landed into the podcasting world and it will save the lives and sanity of parents everywhere! Fortunately, I get to be a co-host of it with my Chicago Dad-brother, Eric, who blogs at DiaryDad’s Adventures. The podcast is called, “But Daddy Why?” We help answer those questions that kids MUST have answers to, but parents simply don’t have the answers for. We do the research and spin it into 20-30 minute podcast form.

Now that you’re sold and are wondering where you can send all of your money to, let me tell you this… Continue reading

huggies wipes

Huggies Wipes Saved My Marriage: Tales From the Parents Council

huggies parents council
I was invited to the inaugural Huggies Parents Council that was held in Chicago to discuss the controversy over “glass” found in Huggies wipes. There were a dozen fellow parent bloggers/influencers invited to bring concerns, comments, and/or criticism to the council and have a chance to speak directly to the brand. I saw this an awesome opportunity to represent the dad-voice to a major brand and to encourage more involvement of dads in marketing, research, and overall branding. What I didn’t expect was to realize that Huggies saved my marriage.

Before we get to the moment of clarity that made me go home and bombard my wife with huggies (really bad joke), let me give you a recap of what I learned. Before I went, I set up a poll to see how many of you used Huggies, how many heard about the controversy, what you did or would have done after hearing about the controversy, and if you had any specific concerns that you wanted me to bring to the brand.

I found it interesting that the majority of the people taking the survey said that they trusted the brand and either ignored the claim of glass in the wipes or would have researched the claim instead of simply halting use of the wipes immediately. That told me that parents see Huggies as a trusted brand. (Made me feel good about our choice in wipes, little did I know that it actually saved my marriage… more on that, soon.) Continue reading