Friday, September 28, 2012

Ten Favorite Father Quotes


A lot of smart people have said some great things about fathers. When your children grow up, single dad, what will they say about you?

“A father is always making his baby into a little woman. And when she is a woman he turns her back again.” – Enid Bagnold

“Any man can be a Father, but it takes someone special to be a dad.” – Ann Geddes

“A girl's father is the first man in her life, and probably the most influential.” – David Jeremiah

“A boy, by the age of three years, senses that his destiny is to be a man, so he watches his father particularly--his interests, manner, speech, pleasures, his attitude toward work.” – Benjamin Spock

“Every father should remember that one day his son will follow his example instead of his advice.” – Charles F. Kettering

“An angry father is most cruel towards himself.” – Publilius Syrus

“My son is my son till he have got him a wife, But my daughter's my daughter all the days of her life.” – Thomas Fuller

“When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished by how much he'd learned in seven years.” – Sam Clemens

“A truly rich man is one whose children run into his arms when his hands are empty.” - Unknown

“Noble fathers have noble children.” – Euripides

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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

So, your teenage daughter wants to read 'Shades of Grey,' huh?

This article first appeared on Septebmer 22, 2012 in 'LIFE AS A HUMAN: The Online Magazine For Evolving Minds.'

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Okay, single dads. Here's a real parenting humdinger for you:

You have a teenage daughter and she's a great kid. Actually, she's a great young lady. She excels academically, she's responsible, and she has almost always made the right decisions when it comes to peer pressure. Additionally, she's done so well in the sport she's chosen to pursue and she's such a good role model, she actually teaches younger kids the sport. In her spare time, she loves to read.

Photo Credit: The Guardian UK
So, when she asks you if it would be all right with you if she read Fifty Shades of Grey, what do you say? (You may recall, I reviewed Fifty Shades of Grey a couple of months back right here: Shades of Grey: Single Father's Book Club.)

This single father parenting stuff doesn't get any easier, huh?

I'd love to have your comments, suggestions, and other feedback. In a few weeks, I'll address some of the best, most helpful, and most entertaining comments. Then I'll tell you what I actually did when my daughter asked me if she could read Shades, and the reasons I did it!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Not Just for SINGLE Dads: Funny Father Pictures

I've scoured the Internet for some of the most humorous pictures of fathers. If a picture says a thousand words, then there are the equivalent of 7,000 words to support the need for a book like The Single Father's Guide to Life, Cooking, and Baseball
 
Yes, I've kept them PG-rated.


Daddy is his daughters' most important role model.


Single Dads can use as much of "The Force" as they can get!

 
Now, what about the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny, and Santa Claus?

 
Multi-tasking is an important skill for single dads.

 
Traveling in style.

 
Who needs a shopping cart?

 
The only criteria for membership are being a dad and having a teenage daughter.



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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Archery, Zorbing, and Losing 40 Pounds

It must be the manager in me, but while I was on the treadmill this past weekend at my local gym, Sports, Fitness, & Fun in Florida, New York, I worked out a little health and fitness math.

Between my visits to the gym and my workouts at Northeastern Martial Arts Academy, I exercise an average of 4.5 times each week. Based on the calorie counters on the elliptical, treadmill, and stationary bike, I conservatively estimate that I burn 600 calories during each visit. That works out to 2,700 calories a week or, get this, 140,400 (2700 calories X 52 weeks) calories in a year!

According to CaloriesPerHour.com, a person must burn about 3,500 calories to lose one pound of fat. Conversely, consuming 3,500 calories in excess of the body's calorie needs will result in one pound of fat gained. Considering I burn 140,400 calories at the gym a year and my body loses a pound every time I burn 3,500 calories, then I eliminate approximately 40.1 pounds of fat every year (140,400 calories/3,500 per pound). In other words, if I hadn't exercised at the gym during the past twelve months, I would be more than 40 pounds heavier!

What works for the single dad works for his children, too. While the specific numbers may be different for a child or teenager than an adult, the calculus and the theory are the same. According to The National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, the "prevalence of obesity among children aged 6 - 11 years increased from 6.5% in 1980 to 19.6% in 2008." So, an active lifestyle for father and children, which includes a balanced and consistent diet, proper rest, and exercise keeps the single father family healthier and happier.

Regular exercise for children in the form of after school activities ranging from tennis to taekwondo and from archery to zorbing contributes to that healthy lifestyle. Check out more ideas for fun family activities as well as healthy, easy-to-make recipes in The Single Father's Guide to Life, Cooking, and Baseball.
 

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To make sure you're getting blog posts and news, connect with Matthew S. Field on Facebook at Matthew S. Field - Author and subscribe to The Single Father's Guide by adding your email address at the upper right side of this page.

Friday, September 14, 2012

A Game of Inches: Trading in the Chips

So, maybe you're with your kids or buddies watching the New York Giants grind it out on the gridiron with the Tampa Bay Bucs. Maybe, you've turned on the 2011 World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals battle for the last National League wild card with the Los Angeles Dodgers. The game is a real nail-biter, which gets you to craving something salty and crunchy to eat. During a official's review of a call or a pitching change, you run into the kitchen and grab a bag of chips.

STOP RIGHT THERE!

According to Livestrong, an ounce of regular potato chips contain 153 calories, 10.5 grams of fat, very little protein or other nutritional value. Often, though, chips contain a ton of sodium and as an added bonus, quite a bit of MSG, which doesn't do anything good for your body and probably a few things that are actually sort of bad! And, believe me, an ounce of chips won't even start to scratch your snack itch.

You still have that craving for a salty, crunchy snack, so what do you do? Well, The Single Father's Guide suggestion is to trade in the chips for the Crumb-Cruncher's Evolving Trail Mix:

Crumb-Cruncher’s Evolving Trail Mix

                                    One 8-ounce bag nuts, raw or roasted
                                    One 8-ounce bag fruit, dried
                                    One 8-ounce bag wasabi "nuts"

In a bowl, add nuts (almonds, cashews, pecans, etc.), dried fruit (blueberries, cherries, cranberries, raisins, etc.), and wasabi nuts. Mix with a spoon. Leave on the counter for general munching by dad and the kids. As stores diminish, replace with more of the same or some different items to mix it up!

The salty nuts will satisfy that salty/crunchy craving, the dried fruit will add a "sweet," and the wasabi nuts will cover the spicy base, so all of your taste desires are satisfied. Moreover, the mix will be lower in carbs and chemicals, higher in protein, and will stick to your ribs a lot longer than those chips.

Making healthier choices everyday will keep both you, single dad, and your kids healthier and happier. Remember, you don't have to hit a home run every time you're up to bat. Just keep hitting singles and you'll score plenty of "runs."

Remember, it's a game of inches.

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To make sure you're getting blog posts and news, connect with Matthew S. Field on Facebook at Matthew S. Field - Author and subscribe to The Single Father's Guide by adding your email address at the upper right side of this page.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

A Place for Single Dad's in the Hudson Valley

I'm working with local psychotherapist Susan Isaacson to develop a group for single dads in New York's Hudson Valley, northern New Jersey, and eastern Pennsylvania. The group will discuss men's health, parenting, personal relationships, grief, and more. All single fathers, regardless of their situation and circumstances, are welcome.

We already have few single dads who will participate in the group, which will start Tuesday, September 18, 2012 and meet from 7:00 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. weekly at Susan's office located at 10 Colonial Avenue in Warwick, New York. The first group will probably continue for six weeks and the fee will be very nominal.

If you know a single father who may benefit from our group, please ask him to call Susan Isaacson this week to reserve a space. Susan can be contacted at 845-986-5191. Thanks.


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To make sure you're getting blog posts and news, connect with Matthew S. Field on Facebook at Matthew S. Field - Author and subscribe to The Single Father's Guide by adding your email address at the upper right side of this page.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Culinary Confessions on KAZG-AM with Kim & Don

Thanks to Kim and Don, the hosts of Culinary Confessions on KAZG-AM in the Phoenix/Scottsdale market, who interviewed Matthew S. Field on Wednesday, September 5, 2012. Kim and Don really did their research and asked some great questions about The Single Father's Guide to Life, Cooking, and Baseball.

Learn more about Kim and Don, and check out Culinary Confessions with Kim and Don to hear the entire interview!

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To make sure you're getting blog posts and news, connect with Matthew S. Field on Facebook at Matthew S. Field - Author and subscribe to The Single Father's Guide by adding your email address at the upper right side of this page.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Top 5 Songs About Single Dads (and Their Children)

A few weeks ago, I published a blog entitled "Mother's Day and Motherless Children" in which I linked to video of a live Eric Clapton performance of his cover of the blues standard, Motherless Children. A somewhat obscure musical reference with which most folks might not be familiar unless the those same folks remember the theme music from the 1980's HBO comedy series Not Necessarily the News, it got me to thinking about songs about the single dads and their kids.

Musical taste is, almost by definition, subjective. Still, when it comes to relatively few songs about single fatherhood, it seems each one is written and sung from a place in the heart divorced and widower fathers profoundly relate.

Here are my favorites:

1) I'm So Happy, I Can't Stop Crying - Sting: Admittedly, I was never a huge fan of The Police or Sting, for that matter. However, he really seem to put the listener in the shoes worn by a divorced, weekend dad. Check this:

Seven weeks have passed now since she left me
She shows her face to ask me how I am
She says the kids are fine and that they miss me
Maybe I could come and baby-sit sometime
She says, "Are you O.K.? I was worried about you
Can you forgive me? I hope that you'll be happy."
I'm so happy that I can't stop crying
I'm so happy I'm laughing through my tears

2) Single Father - Kid Rock: Already the subject of a post (Kid Rock's 'Single Father' and Grief), Single Father written by David Allan Coe and performed by Kid Rock is a great, heartfelt, contemporary treatment of a divorce single father's circumstances and emotions.

3) Motherless Children - Blind Willie Johnson: "Motherless children have a hard time when your mother is dead, Lord" is a powerful, direct, and painfully honest line from this classic blues standard. Not surprisingly, it was covered by the artist of the next on the list, among others.

4) Motherless Child - Eric Clapton: Could almost be the sequel to Blind Willie's Motherless Children. A motherless child, likely a grown man, apologizes for his failures and shortcomings as they pertain to a romantic relationship. "If I mistreat you, girl, I sure don't mean no harm. Well, I'm a motherless child, and I don't know right from wrong."

5) Don't Cry Daddy - Elvis Presley: Depression, while not doing anyone in the family any good, is certainly a possible reaction to loss. Elvis sings (in a way that only he can) Mac Davis' lines describing a single father's child encouraging his widower father to get it together: "Daddy, you still got me and little Tommy. Together, we'll find a brand new mommy. Oh Daddy, please don't cry."

While it's true that tastes in music are personal, there's just something comforting about knowing another person not only gets it, but took the time to write a great song about it. For me, there's just something about the blues that makes me happy.


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To make sure you're getting blog posts and news, connect with Matthew S. Field on Facebook at Matthew S. Field - Author and subscribe to The Single Father's Guide by adding your email address at the upper right side of this page.