Happy Memorial Day Weekend!
Guess which twin?
This review is of the Diaper Dude Grey Courier Messenger III. This bag was given to our blog by the company for the purposes of doing a review.
…& thank god it was!
It was our first day leaving the hospital with the twins after 12 days in the NICU. We pulled up to the house and began to unload, each of us picking up one of the car seats & myself grabbing our then-diaper bag by Happ.
That was when I knew we were in trouble.
We had purchased this particular diaper bag at my wife’s urging back in November. She loved it for style and comfort, and still does to this day.
When I am “being the man” and carrying up the diaper bag as well as a baby, it just isn’t functional. The short strap, perfect for my wife, slides right off my shoulder, down to my wrist where it swings and slaps the car seat while I walk.
We stayed in over the next few weeks.
Fortunately I met The Diaper Dude at a Big City Mom’s Event in March, & I stopped to ask him about his unique brand for dads.
My Dad Days changed forever.
After we connected and he heard about my twins & diaper bag ordeal, The DD (we’re on a nickname basis now) graciously offered me a bag complimentary.
The next week when we took our first road trip, I saw the difference simply walking down to the car.
Maybe it’s a guy thing, maybe it’s a me thing – I cannot find ANYTHING in a woman’s bag!
I remember my mother’s diaper bags for my younger siblings always seeming crowded and stuffed. My wife can blindly distinguish chapstick from lipstick in her purse; I can’t find either, even using my iPhone flashlight.
This bag, for some reason, is oriented to my head and, as simple as it is, everything has its own spot.
The initial hook is of course the Checklist on the inside flap.
Beyond that, could it be that different from a traditional diaper bag?
Insulated pockets on the side hold formula at temp (we use one side for our quick access tube items – sunscreen, sanitizer, lip balm, butt paste).
Three external flaps are perfect for diapers & travel wipes.
Inside, there is a large stuffable compartment; there are also three sub-pockets that are great for keeping accessories readily accessible (phone charger anyone?).
It’s 2017, so of course there is also an additional flap for your iPad. This helps the Diaper Dude Messenger convert to a convenient messenger bag for events even without baby!
If there is one gripe I have, it is that the zippers can come undone on their own sometimes. It has happened to me with main compartment zipper AND the smaller zippers around the various flaps.
On the other hand, when I had my first Public Restroom Changing Table experience, being able to easily rip the bag open with my one free hand came in “handy.”
Since getting this bag, I’ve noticed other dads struggling with their traditional (or even fashionable) diaper bags. Every single time, I male-model my Diaper Dude Messenger & they all echo my sentiments about what a simple notion it is to design a functional bag for dads.
Finally, it must be noted that Diaper Dude is under the True Dude Movement, and 5% of all sales go to support Futures Without Violence, a charitable organization focused on coaching boys into men.
Their Coaching Boys Into Men (CBIM) program provides high school athletic coaches with the resources they need to promote respectful behavior among their players and help prevent relationship abuse, harassment, and sexual assault.
That sounds like #beingagrownman to me, and the perfect bonus for dads who need a functional bag anyway.
Get your Diaper Dude bags & more thru the True Dude website.
What dad-accessory did you never expect to need & now can’t imagine living without? Leave a comment below or reply on Twitter!
We’ve previously discussed the remarkable naturals weapons human children grow quickly in their infancy.
Thankfully, with time, patience, and the steady hand of a head of surgery, there is a solution to this problem.
The question is, what parent has a readily available supply of time, patience, and steadiness?
However, between the two of us (and the overwhelming amount of work my wife does for the boys), the task of “surgery” has fallen to me.
Fathers: nothing you have done or encountered can properly prepare you for the task of cutting your infant children’s fingernails.
For starters, there is a unique property to infant fingernail clippers – they are SHARP! Unlike the dull clunkers made for adults, each blade of infant clippers is fine enough to turn fingernails into the phyllo dough used to make baklava.
Contrast that with the infant’s fingernails – fine, paper-like white lines that blend in perfectly with their skin, despite being able to slice you like an envelope edge.
Add in the three cups of coffee required to even be cognizant at 8:15 AM after a night of bottle-fussiness, and you’ll WISH you’d spent 8 years in school preparing for this moment.
Now imagine having twins.
I can’t complain too much right now, because thankfully THIS morning Archer was content to lay in his boppy while I worked slowly and steadily around Logan’s fingernails.
Not too much later, Logan dozed off to sleep just in time for me to get to work on Archer.
Perhaps I am too cautious; there is nothing that ruins my day more than a hangnail. Maybe babies don’t yet have the sensitivity in their fingertips for that to be a concern (who wants to fact-check and let me know?).
Still, until they are old enough to wield the Scissors of Doom themselves, this routine will be done with patience, meticulousness, and lots of internal stress for dad.
At least it is one less thing for my wife to have to do.
Do you have a task you always perform around the house or for the kids? Let us know with a comment here or a reply on Twitter!
After much deliberation with the wife, it’s official:
Today at work, I received the following text:
Now you can imagine the number that text did on my heart strings! My baby boys, cognizant, noticing each other, acting like joyful old friends reunited at only 16 weeks old.
As one of four boys, I can only hope my sons have the close bond I will always share with my brothers.
As twins, society (& us parents) can also carry an expectation that they WILL be close, best friends, identical.
The main thing I struggle with even as a new parent is finding the balance between wanting the best for my children, & wanting what my children want for themselves.
Will my boys be baseball fans? If I try to make them baseball fans, will that turn them off? What if they are… Cardinals fans?!?
And every class we took before our kids were born reiterated the point: treat each twin on their own terms, never assume they are close or even like each other!
So when I see a situation I have zero control over, such as their first reactions to noticing each other, the joy when it goes “my way” is immeasureable.
Now I just need to know how to handle it when they finally react the way I DON’T want in a situation.
Since the twins were born, I’ve had one selfish complaint: why does my wife instantly get to drop twenty pounds of her pregnancy weight while my pregnancy weight remains?
The stupidity of this complaint is wrapped up in the cause itself. My wife never demanded I eat like crap during her pregnancy.
In fact, for the most part she ate relatively healthy while I let stress & work fatigue influence my decisions.
All that changed this week when I finally resolved to get my body back.
I may not be taking the all-or-nothing approach of our pre-wedding diet. That said, I find every time I go to the gym for even half an hour, I make better choices over the next 12 hours.
Smaller portions come more naturally.
I think to stand up to burp a child instead of sitting.
Popping out an extra ten push-ups or squats before jumping in the shower for work Is no sweat.
I was using my career & time as an excuse. “Once they allow me a personal chef, trainer, & SoulCycle membership, then I’ll get back to my aspirational body.”
Unfortunately, as dads we have a responsibility to be healthy. My forties are closer than I realize, & if I’m saving for two colleges I want to be sure to see my kids graduate!
So until the day when discipline comes easy, it’s up to me to find the will myself.
Thankfully my wife fully supports my choice.
Then again, why wouldn’t she?
Special Thanks also to Krave Jerky for supporting our family health goals!
They hooked it up with a bag of products at the recent Great Big Family Play Day & it has been making post-workout simple snacking easy.
What simple tips have you used to keep your #dadbod at bay? Comment below for a chance to win a Krave Jerky bag/bar/stick combo from us!
…& I don’t mean on XBox360.
Dads: do your partners ever come to you with a need, & at the same time apologize for making that request?
We live in an age where we are encouraged to do things out of love, passion, excitement. “Pursue your dreams.” “You can be whatever you want.” “Don’t tell me what I’m supposed to do.”
While I approve of all of those as reasons FOR doing something, they also shouldn’t be excuses for NOT doing what is your duty.
I can’t stay home from work just because I “love my son(s) so much.” Similarly, I can’t ignore my wife OR EXACT EMOTIONAL REVENGE ON HER for waking me up at 4:30 in the morning.
Because we are a team.
Because she stayed home last evening while I went to a work function.
Because she provides 75% of their daily food out of her own body.
And here’s the kicker: when your partner hits you with a request at your most inconvenient time, SMILE while you do it.
She’s coming to you because she is exhausted.
He needs help because he’s at the end of his rope.
She waited until the last possible moment to interrupt your sleep, & did it feeling guilty for doing so.
Don’t just do the action, perform the task in a way that makes them proud of the team they chose. Make”Duty” your call sign, even if that call comes at 4:30 AM.
Reply on social media with your #dadselfie
Guess which one:
For my first review, I wanted to start with an easy one. WaterPura Baby Wipes have quite literally stolen my heart as a parent of multiple kids who can’t yet wipe themselves.
Note: WaterPura wipes are currently only available in select stores and on their website.
We were first introduced to Emily of WaterPura at an LA Baby Show in November. Her company had just recently launched in New York and this was her first branding trip out west. We were impressed; they seemed to feel like a wipe should feel & do what a wipe should do.
I had no idea that was anything special.
Thankfully a fellow mom (Pamela Morrone – Creating Clarity) mentioned after the show, “those wipes were AMAZING,” so I put them on my radar.
I tried to order them from Amazon when we finally ran out of our hospital sample packs of Pampers/Huggies/WaterWipes/some off-brand “organic” company that was like wiping with a 10¢ grocery bag.
Since they weren’t appearing on Amazon search, I emailed Emily (#dadtip – ALWAYS get your favorite vendors’ contact info at Baby Shows!) & she mentioned she was in LA for the #SoCalBabyShow in a few weeks. I ordered WaterWipes in the meantime & marked my calendar.
Let’s be honest: I was raised on Johnson & Johnson shampoos, trans fat-infused snacks, & using the strongest bug spray possible. I could care less about which chemicals or fibers or fruit extracts are used in an over-the-counter product. The “chemical-free / citrus-only” pitch is great, I guess, if you’re into that sort of thing.
One thing matters to me when I have TWO screaming babies with blowouts who I have to change on-the-go on a concrete stoop behind a restaurant that doesn’t have changing tables in the men’s room – performance.
(Pics or it didn’t happen, I know. My hands were kinda full though at the time)
So what is “performance” in a baby wipe?
It’s almost like Emily is a real mom who has used other market products before (including the much lauded WaterWipes). She seemed to know things intuitively like, “the flap should be wide enough for TWO fingers to grab the next wipe” & “why doesn’t the flap just stay open?”
There is also the unique (& likely cost-effective) idea that instead of being SOPPING wet, wipes should be moist enough to do their job without creating a new mess of their own. #problemsolved WaterPura!
Try accidentally squeezing a WaterWipe too hard while changing. You will suddenly have a fruity wet spot in the middle of your changing pad (or coffee table, in our case).
WaterPura wipes are about 1/3rd larger than the average baby wipe we’ve used. This advantage is two-fold. There is more use per-wipe; also each wipe naturally follows the next out of the container. Every batch of WaterWipes we’ve used has had the final ten wipes or so meld into a single glob that requires a magician’s dexterity to untangle mid-changing.
Finally, for dad, WaterPura wipes are tough! Trying to pull one apart is akin to opening a bag of Kettle Chips, you know, the large one that requires an Incredible Hulk level of grunting to get opened. In conclusion, as a reviewer I should note sponsorships, freebies, etc. Well, I would, except these wipes were so amazing, they were the only item at the SoCal Baby Show that I purchased from a vendor without even trying to get free ones for a review! We are true believers and users of WaterPura baby wipes.
We just placed our re-up order. I strongly recommend you order in bulk as well, twins or no!
Leave a comment and tell us what you thought of WaterPura or if there are other brands that deserve a second look.