Archives for posts with tag: new dad blog

Except that he doesn’t run yet…or crawl…or even roll over.  This pic is of Gavin at 5 weeks old.  Some of our friends and family bought these clothes as gifts (and I thank you) to make our baby look like a track star!  Boy, does he look fast…

Check out my jogging pose!

Dude, Where's My Bag?

Yes, dude is in the title twice.  The first dude is for the company name, Diaper Dude.  The second dude is for the name of this particular bag, the Dude Bag.  Got it?  Good.

This guy, Chris Pegula, is a genius.  He invented these diaper bags for men.  He knew that men didn’t want to embarrass themselves by carrying diapers and baby stuff in a pink and paisley pussycat themed bag.  (Just a little emasculating, don’t you think?)  So, he created Diaper Dude, bags that are functional and manly.  And manly.

This particular Dude Bag is the original gangsta’.  It’s what made Diaper Dude, well, Diaper Dude.  It’s a shoulder bag with just enough compartments for you to keep track of your stuff.  (Too many compartments and it starts to be a woman’s bag…like, I have an earrings pocket, phone pocket, watch pocket, breath mints pocket, credit cards pocket, change pocket, keys pocket, mascara pocket, lipstick pocket, and even a pocket pocket.  It’s a pocket to hold a pocket.  And men wonder why women can’t find anything in their purses…)

I love this bag.  This is our only diaper bag (which says a lot).  We have the gray and orange one.  There are a few other styles and all are  Y-chromosome friendly (for example:  camo, black, and plaid).  The bag is easy to carry and has an adjustable strap.  The zippers are large enough for my hands and durable for when we have to cram everything into one pocket for no reason, which happens often with me.

There are a ton of features that I like on this bag:  cellphone holder, two front small pockets, a large middle pocket and two rear stretchy stuff pouches in the back.  I use every part of this bag and it’s got everything I need and nothing I don’t.  (Steph even likes it, and she’s not a dude!)  There’s really not much that blows my mind about this bag, but that’s the beauty of it.  It does exactly what it was designed for, no more, no less.  It’s durable, dependable, and useful, just like a dad should be.  It fits perfectly into the fabric of our lives.  (Isn’t that from a commercial?)

By the way, they’ve even added a few bag designs for the not-so-girly girls.


Overall Rating:  10 Worms   

Ease of Use:  10 Worms  

Performance:  10 Worms 

Features:  9 Worms 

Durability:  10 Worms 

Manliness:  10 Worms (It’s made by a dude, for a dude.)

Retail Price:  $60



Large zippers, easy access pockets, changing pad, padded back, cellphone pocket, stroller clips, key clip, durable polyester material.


Waterproof outer would be nice.

Things I would modify:

Make the cell phone pocket larger.  Mine barely fits and it’s an HTC Droid.

Where to find:

I don’t know whether to be proud of this or embarrassed, so I’m just going to think glass half-full.

As a teenager, I worked at a little supermarket in my neighborhood.  It was my dojo.  Kind of like the Karate Kid movie (the real one) where Ralph Macchio was washing cars and learning Karate. I, on the other hand, was honing my martial art techniques by bagging groceries.

Left hand cups the canned vegetables, right hand palms the lettuce.  Make eye contact with customer.  Is she going to tip me?  No?  Lettuce to the bottom of the grocery bag and canned vegetables directly on top.  Repeat with avocados and canned beans coming down the conveyor.  This time, eyes closed.

With this intense supermarket training, I was able to sharpen my hand speed and coordination.  By the end of my 2 years there, I was able to make the bagels on aisle 10 crumble to the ground with only a glancing blow.

Young student says “Master, when will I know that I’m done here?”
Old master replies “When you are no longer pink in the middle.”

Little did I know, that 20 years later, I still maintained my supermarket skills.  And I would need it to save the life of my son, Gavin.

Steph and I are in the bedroom.  It’s morning and she’s getting ready for work.  The Worm’s awake so she gets him out of his crib, brings him into our room and plops him down on the bed.  “Watch him, ok?”  She goes to the bathroom and fixes her hair.  Gavin and I are both sitting on the bed looking at each other.  The Worm then starts crawling around atop the duvet.  (You know where this is going, right?)  I’m caught up in conversation with Steph and I’ve got one eye on Gavin.  Well, he crawls to the edge of the bed and looks over.  I think nothing of it, because in my conscious mind, no rational baby would want to leap off the edge of the bed and plunge 2 feet to their fate…

This one’s not rational.  He dives.

This is an exact reenactment.

In the flash of half a second, I lunge towards him and grab onto his right lower leg catching him with his head dangling 2 inches from the ground.  (It was a one-handed grab, in case you were wondering.)  On a side note, since all the great techniques have names I call this one “Oak tree Catches Flying Squirrel

Afterwards, with baby safe on the bed again, my adrenalin kicked in.  I also realized Steph watched the whole thing in the bathroom mirror.  (Yes, I got an earful from her.)  If I had missed, I’m pretty sure there would have been two doctor’s visits, one for his head and one for my a$$.  (I’m sorry Steph.  You are right again, as always.  It won’t happen again.  You are the prettiest woman in the universe.)

I’m patting myself on the back for this one.  I’m still in the awe part of my awesomeness.

Gavin – 5; Dad – 4

Summer Infant Best View Color Video Monitor (Silver)

I’m a little old-fashioned.  Not old-fashioned 90’s style, but old-fashioned 70’s style.  There’s a lot of technology that I believe should be left out of parenting.  A video monitor WAS one of them.  I don’t know why, but I guess BC (before child), I thought that I should be able to hear a baby crying through 3 walls and a door no problem.  Silly me.  I learned quickly that the Summer Best View video monitor in the baby’s room was almost as incredible an addition to the family as the baby.

We mounted the video camera about 15″ above the top of baby’s crib.  From that vantage point, I can pan and zoom to any part of the crib without a problem.  In the daytime, the screen is color.  At night, the infrared kicks in automatically (I assume it’s infrared, but someone please correct me if I’m wrong here.) and I’ve got night vision.  The camera has plenty of range of motion as well, which increases the number of mounting options.

I use this camera every day.  It’s another one of the items in my house that gets a lot of use and wear.  So far, the Summer Infant Best View Camera has been holding up very well.  Once I put Gavin to nap, I can see what he’s doing and hear what noises he is making before he falls asleep.  I love it.  Now, I don’t have to run to his room every time I hear a noise.  I can just look at the monitor and avoid waking up the baby.  The silent mode is excellent for when you are watching TV or something and only need a visual sign if the baby makes noise.  The LED’s light up on the monitor according to the sound level in the baby’s room.

We don’t have a need for the A/V output portion of the Summer Infant Best View Monitor, but someone mentioned on another website that they hooked it up to their TV and recorded some of the video from the monitor.  (That’s a great idea, especially if your baby starts to do things alone in his crib before showing it off to the family!)

I used to think that having a video monitor was a lazy man’s way of taking care of his baby.  But, I was very wrong.  It is great for checking on the baby without disturbing him.  I can do it while typing out this blog!  I can do it while hanging out in the garage!  I can do it while watching a movie in the living room!  It’s baby management at my fingertips.  It’s so handy, I may even continue to use the camera well into Gavin’s teenage years…

NOTE:  If you are going to mount the camera above the baby’s crib, you need to find a place to hide or shield the camera’s power cord from the baby’s reach.


Overall Rating:  7 Worms   

Ease of Use:  10 Worms  

Performance:  8 Worms 

Features:  8 Worms 

Durability:  7 Worms 

Manliness:  10 Worms (Come on, it’s a gadget!)

Retail Price:  $199



Provides easy monitoring of baby room, both video and audio.  Silent audio mode.  Remote controlled pan, scan, and zoom.  Day and night viewing.  Can add up to 3 extra cameras.  A/V outputs to a TV.


Could use more volume control.  Vertical axis movement makes a bit of noise.  Video could be a little more crisp in night mode.  When you are moving the camera, the audio cuts in and out.  Battery life?  (I don’t know, but I’ve heard elsewhere that battery life could be poor.  I’ve been using this product for 9 months now and yes, there’s been a degradation in the battery life, but not much.  If the battery dies within a year or so, I will adjust my rating accordingly.  But, so far, it’s been fine.)

Things I would modify:

Higher resolution night vision.  I guess it would be nice to have a thermometer built into the unit to remotely monitor baby room temperature.

Where to find:

Cleaned Up and Ready to...Sleep

This picture was taken a little while after the incident with the lederhosen and the pitchfork.  What?  I’m trying to make this picture interesting…Ok, he’s napping soon after completing his descent from the warmth of mom’s womb.

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