How Two Dads Find the Fun in Parenting

Welcome to our new series, Seller Stories! Where GBG customers and parents walk us through a typical day. We ask real parents how they balance their busy lives with kids and they give advice on managing life’s most important role: being a parent. 

Today’s guests: Chad & Michael

  • Current occupation: Chad works in higher education and Michael works in visual merchandising for a sports apparel retailer. 
  • Children: One-year-old boy 
  • Social handles: @doublethedadjokes 

Tell us a bit about your family! How many kids do you have? 

We are two dads raising our one-year-old son and having a blast. We love to travel to Disney World, have everyday adventures and find the fun in parenting. 

Can you walk us through your journey to parenthood as a same-sex couple? 

Our journey to parenthood was pretty surreal. We had originally thought that we were going to pursue adoption. We always hoped that having a child was going to be a part of our family’s story. 

A few years ago, we went to an adoption session in our city and were ready to commit to an agency after a lot of research. We understood the risks and timeline involved with adopting a newborn, which was our preference. 

Then, out of the blue one day, a very good friend of mine called me and offered to be a gestational carrier (surrogate) for us. This was completely surreal! We had always thought that surrogacy was not in the cards for us, and was only something that more wealthy people had available to them. After beginning to work with fertility specialists and financial planning advocates, we pursued this path. 

We are happy to help other same-sex couples by answering any questions they might have about surrogacy or working with a gestational carrier by sharing our story more personally. 

How do you find the “fun” in parenting? 

We realized very early on that there was no use in getting worked up or stressed out over the small stuff that we couldn’t control. So, we just decided to have fun with parenting. 

It was easy to become weighed down with too much information and worry too much about whether our son was hitting all of the right milestones - which is important - but if we were taking everything too seriously, and not having a good time as parents and spouses, then were we really modeling the type of relationship for him that we hope he can emulate in the future? 

We hope that he sees how easy and fun it is to laugh and play, tell a bad joke, and create a life full of love. That’s all we want. 

Your son just turned 1 (congrats!). What are some must-have baby products you can’t live without? 

Chad & Michael walking outside with their son in a stroller

Every few weeks and months of the first year brought on so many different needs for growth and development. We really enjoyed researching the types of products that would help him to grow and learn along the way. This meant that there was a constant shuffle of gear throughout the house. Intentionally-designed products coupled with lots of outside and creative play have been integral to our parenting style. 

We enjoyed introducing our son to the Lovevery play gym early on, and watching him interact with the various parts of this set. We’d move things around, jingle the bells, and invite our French Bulldog over for some puppy snuggles. 

When he got a bit bigger, we switched out the play gym for musical toys, specifically the Melissa and Doug caterpillar xylophone. Recently, he’s been loving his Melissa and Doug Chomp and Clack Alligator Push Toy as he’s starting to dart all over the house and learning to walk. All of these intentionally-designed toys have been very great, but we can’t forget how fun our kitchen bowls and spoons are, the swing set across the street, and splashing in the sink! 

Shop Baby Must-Haves

What's one product you thought you had to buy new, but you wish you bought used (or open box)?

A compact or travel stroller would have been a great used or open box purchase. We did a lot of research on this item to ensure it would fit into an overhead compartment, was easily foldable, and had a decent amount of canopy coverage for our Disney World trips

We ended up buying a brand new compact stroller, but have since seen the same version available used at a much better price! This would have been a great buy! 

Shop Stroller Collection

Can you walk us through a day in the life of you and your family?

7:00-7:30 am: Our son has blessed us (so far) by being a good sleeper. He wakes up at 7 am and is ready to start the day. Michael gets him up, has a morning bottle, checks on all of our family photos on the wall, and has lots of giggles in the mirror. I am usually returning home from a 6 am CrossFit class right when he wakes up, so I get dog duty first thing. 

7:30-8:00 am: By 7:30, we’re packing his snacks and meals, getting him dressed, and making sure he has everything he needs for the day. He’s out the door by 7:50 for an 8:00 am drop-off with our wonderful nanny where he’ll spend the day at the park, the library, and with his other two friends in our nanny share. Our nanny cares for three one-year-olds in our neighborhood, all within a few blocks of our homes. 

4:00-6:00 pm: We pick him up at 4 pm and are ready to play some more! He’s ready to start walking any day, so we race around the house with a push walker, go for walks in the park, and prepare dinner. 

6:00-7:30 pm: At 6 pm, we have dinner together as a family. After dinner, we might have a stroll around our neighborhood park, have bathtime, or read books. Then, it's time for bed at 7:30. Our little guy loves to give his puppy a goodnight hug and squeezes his lovie, “Diddy” the dragon during his nighttime bottle. 

7:30-8:00 pm: After bedtime, we’re able to do a quick sort of items that he’s outgrown or not using anymore and set them aside for GoodBuy Gear. 

Since he’s grown so much in the first year, it has been easy to pick through the things he no longer needs or uses to pass along to another growing family. 

Do you have any parenting tips or advice for couples who are expecting their first?

As you’re anticipating your first child, remember that the next few months and year will be a blur. You’ll either ask for, or receive, advice from a lot of people around you, and then you’ll start to offer it to others. You’ll remember the good times and soon forget the sleepless nights and uncontrollable cries.

The highs are really high. Cement these into your heart and let them carry you through any lows that you might experience. 

Remember to laugh with your baby and your partner. Try to have fun with parenting! 

For more Seller Stories, check out: A Day in the Life of a Mom of 3 Boys Under the Age of 3 and A Day in the Life of a Stay-at-Home Mom in Philly

This series is meant to provide an inside look at an individual’s experience. Parenting is personal. All opinions and thoughts are their own and do not necessarily reflect GoodBuy Gear’s point of view. 

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