Saturday, June 20, 2009

A Dad's Consumer Report

Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there, especially to the Grizz and my Dear Old Uncle Grandpa (“D.O.U.G.”)! Coincidentally on this Father’s Day, we await the arrival of Baby Z who is the spawn of our good friends known as the Zillas. Hopefully, Baby Z and the weather will hold out long enough for daddy-z-to-be and I to get a round of disc golf in tomorrow morning.

In light of Daddy Z’s impending fatherhood, we will highlight some of the essential products whose worth and usefulness have been truly tested now that I’ve been fathering for the past 4-plus months. Please note that the names of these products are probably not accurate because I reserve that section of my brain for more important information like world capitals and all-time home run leaders.

1. The Bob Revolution stroller. Almost equivalent in cost and size of a Cadillac, but well worth the investment. G and I go running with this machine at least twice a week, sometimes at obscene hours of the day. Now that she’s pushing 16 pounds, I basically push a 20 pound weight around Castle Island and Carson Beach, which is great considering that I’m hovering in the 180 pound neighborhood.

Seriously, the oversized tires and rugged suspension enable a pretty smooth ride for both the driver and passenger. G’s sleep success rate is a strong to very strong 80% in this contraption. If dad can get a good cardio workout while spending time making faces at son/daughter until he/she falls asleep, I (in a Mayor Quimby voice) hereby declare this stroller to be the cat’s meow. Grade: A.

2. Jameson’s Irish Whiskey. When Anbesol and Tylenol don’t do the trick, I add some Jamey to the Similac and mix up a mini hot toddy. Sometimes, I just stir it right into the rice cereal. It seems to work really well.

Before you go and report me to DSS, I’m just kidding. Just making sure you’re paying attention. This product is for dad after a long hard day at work. I recommend the 18 year version neat and the standard label on the rocks. Grade: A-plus.

3. The Baby Bjorn Bjork holder carrier thing. When she was smaller, I packed G in so that she was facing my chest. It was really handy to use when you are doing chores around the house. At the risk of over-thinking the product’s intent, I believe she liked the warmth of my body heat and the proximity to my heart beat. Basically, dad can get at least 45 minutes of fussy-free time to pick up, which is necessary if mom has no regard for order or zen in the house.

At her current size, I’ve been carrying G facing forward. She loves watching all of the action buzzing around her when we walk to Dunkin’s for mom’s large iced coffee with extra skim milk and 3 sugars. A hidden bonus of the face forward option is how it operates as a chick magnet. Since movin to Boston in 1997, attractive women in their 20s and 30s haven’t paid much attention to me unless they were walking quickly in the opposite direction. When G’s strapped in to my chest now, these ladies come right up smiling and chatting away. Take note, single men with access to small nieces and nephews out there. Babysitting does have its perks.

The only minus points here are for the strain on my back and shoulders after extended periods of use. Grade: B-plus.

4. Nursing tank tops. When the wife was nursing (we’re exclusively bottle feeding now that she’s back to work), when she wasn’t paying attention, I would unclasp one of the sides and latch on for a quick snack if I didn’t feel like going to the fridge. Just kidding! Tough audience.

Really, I included the tank tops in here because the wife raved about them as an alternative to wearing a bra. And they were very reasonably priced at Tar-zhay. Happy wife = happy life. Grade: ask mom.

5. The Cradle Swing a/k/a Mariano “Enter Sandman” Rivera. Although G is probably on the verge of being too big for this thing now, we’ve saved many a nite for quiet dinners after the swing rocked G to sleep just as Mo has saved many a victory for the greatest baseball team of all time.

As for drawbacks, this thing runs on batteries and burns through them pretty quickly. Also, like Rivera, the swing isn’t always a sure thing. (Dave Roberts was out by a mile when he allegedly stole second base in 2004, by the way.) Grade: B-plus.

6. The Bumbo seat. Although G's fat thighs get stuck when I'm trying to pull her out of it, I think this little seat has helped out a lot with the strengthening of her neck. It's also great to prop her inside her little Amazon Rainforest thing while she's sitting in the Bumo. As a matter of fact, she's sitting in it directly to my right as I type. She's yelling and gnawing on a dragon made of triangular parts. Perhaps this is a good time to end.

Okay moms and dads, now it’s your turn. What products are must haves for the new parents out there?


MichelleT said...

The tank tops are fab - good mention as this was one of my favorite purchases. I got them at Target - yes - they do have a nursing bra section if you can believe it! I think I paid $17 for each tank and wore them the entire time I was nursing. They come in grey, white and black. Considering cost and quality, I give this tank a solid B-plus.

I also have to remind the readers of Den's earlier post before G arrived about the selections I made on the baby registry..."why do we need all this stuff?" I think Den finally understands the importance for all these "things." I could say I told you so, but I will hold off on that for now.

On a total side note, we introduced Greta to the ExerSaucer just after Den posted this blog. We both agree – this is an absolute miracle. This can keep her quiet and entertained for well over an hour.

MichelleT said...

Tracy just sent me this comment as well:

Tell Dennis the BOB is #1 and good rating with the A. Something you haven't tried yet, but we used always was the jolly jumper. Basically bungee cords for babies. Oh so fun. I just wished I had an adult one.

Scott said...

I thought you were serious about the Jameson in the bowl of food.

We had a lot of luck with the swing, as well. Our kids weren't big fans of the crib at an early age but we found the car seat with the handle that you can carry the baby around in, to be like Valium. They both spent many hours zonked out in that thing.