As soon as I went back to work, my husband started his “paternity leave.” We’ll call it that, but really it’s all of his vacation and sick time strung together so he can take six weeks off and be home with our kids for FMLA.
“It’s harder than you think!” I warned him before his first day.
“Oh I know,” he told me. “Remember I’ve done this before.”
He was a stay at home dad with our daughter for a year after I went back to work. Of course two kids is different than one, but he learned that quickly.
Nevertheless, my fears were unnecessary because he’s doing awesome. I love coming home to my whole family after work. My daughter is always so excited to see me. Big T is usually napping so I can snuggle and catch up with her until he wakes up ready to nurse.
While my husband is pretty eager to hit the gym the moment I get home, the task of being home with our kids doesn’t seem to push him to the limits I experienced. As I’ve noticed this, I’ve taken note to his ways.
1. He doesn’t set his expectations high. Keeping the kids alive and fed, by whatever means possible, is basically his only goal. He’s not stressed about our daughter’s nutrition, and our son just eats the milk I leave him, so, no problem.
I’ve tried to help out a little by setting aside different snacks in these little containers that she can easily grab and open during the day.
2. He doesn’t try to get a lot done. While I stressed about having things to do, and attempted to keep my daughter entertained, or felt completely guilty on the days I had nothing planned, he doesn’t sweat it. Often I’ll come home and ask what they did and he will say “hung out” or once “we watched YouTube videos and danced.” Very sweet, and easy.
3. When they do go out it’s simple, a walk to the mailbox, a short stroll, or quick drive. I try to keep the stroller set up with wipes, and our stroller hook so he can hang a bag with snacks or whatever they need.
It’s not that I don’t think he’s capable of handling it, I just know how it is and try to make it a little easier for him. He also took my advice and took up babywearing. Smart man.
The extensive outings and pool trips are reserved for when I get home. But maybe he’ll get the hang of doing that alone before his time is up. And as far as the house cleaning goes… We both know it’s hard to keep up with. I think we both have the understanding that we’ll start fresh with our new place once we move.
I’m so grateful for him, and the good job he’s doing stepping it up at home. I joke with him all that time that I wish he’d just quit and be a stay at home dad permanently, but I don’t think he likes it that much.
And because I’ve been sprinkling in these cute little OXO Tot products, here are a couple more that I’ve been loving lately that are helpful to parents on the go or at home. Click here to enter to win $70 worth of travel products from OXO Tot.
Formerly a formula dispenser, turned snack dispenser. Am I genius or what?
A portable bottle drying rack. Nice for cleaning and drying the bottles I use to pump at work.
Flippy Snack Cup. Lil’ J was sharing her snacks with her friends. We have other snack cups like these but they’re so easy to open and dump all the snacks out of. This one seems to prevent that better. Or at least, they haven’t figured it out yet.
Giveaway: Win $70 worth of travel products from OXO Tot. Click here to enter.
Disclosure: The product review is sponsored by OXO in partnership with Linqia. All statements and opinions are my own.