Why do I blog??

It is a slightly strange thing to do – to write about places you go and life as a parent. So why do I do it? Well, having recently “come out” as a blogger to my work colleagues, it felt like a perfect piece to actually write about.

Rewind back to early 2014, Heidi was 9 months old and her mum and I had just separated. Obviously heartbreaking in so many different ways.  I worked full time during the week and so I was fortunate to have Heidi all weekend at the time. It was like being a parent for the first time once again, everything was different, everything was new, all with a backdrop of great sadness and uncertainty.

However, we started going out and about, sometimes just the two of us, sometimes with my parents. We got more confident and as time progressed, trips to the local park turned into trips to playgroups, which then turned into trips to local attractions. We took hundreds of photos and had a great time.

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That great time, however, stopped every Sunday at 7pm when I dropped Heidi back with her mum. I’m not ashamed to say that Sunday evenings were spent crying and crying until there were no more tears. The drive back was awful and I used to lay on my bed looking through the photos that I had taken and reminisce.

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Our first time to the seaside

However, it came to a point where enough was enough and I wanted, no, needed, to do something productive. It came about from 2 reasons:

  • I wanted to have a diary to show Heidi all the brilliant places we had been to over the years so we could look back at it together when she was old enough to understand
  • If I could help just one parent who wanted to take their child out but didn’t know where to go, or wanted to read about other parenting problems, then I needed to help

This additional focus was somewhat misdirected at first – I didn’t know what I was doing, I didn’t have a Twitter or Facebook page for example, but that didn’t matter, I enjoyed what I was doing. It turned the tears into smiles and my online diary was growing.

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At the Scarborough Spa – one of our favourites

As I have being blogging for a couple of years now, I have got a bit better at certain things, but in no way am I as good as some of the bigger bloggers out there. However, I am still working full time, I am still a single parent and obviously those things come first. I only blog because I want to do it and it is fun.

I have got to know some other bloggers quite well, as well as some of the attractions that I write about and that community is a really positive aspect of it all. I even got stopped once at Oakwell Hall by someone and that was a rather cool and unexpected experience to say the least!!

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Fathers Day 2016

As a result, if you are reading this, and you’re going through a particularly difficult spell, my advice would be to do something different that you enjoy to create a “happy place” in your life. It doesn’t have to be blogging, it could be a sport, it could photography, charity work, anything.

By doing something positive, it helps alleviate some of the pain that comes with life. It will never make it disappear, but it will make it better.

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We’ll be on one of these soon!!

As for my situation, I am still a single dad, but I am planning our first overseas holiday together. Life is still tough, but it does get easier and I don’t think that I would have got to this stage without my therapy – blogging!!


To read more of my blog, please feel free to:

“Like” me on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/leedsdad (it will make me happy!!)

“Follow” me on Twitter @leedsdad

Email me at: info@leedsdad.com

Go onto my website: http://www.leedsdad.com

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The Daddy Tag Challenge

I was contacted by @Frenchiemummy on Twitter about this and thought that it might be a good little idea, and supplement the “About Me” post that is pinned to the front page.

The rules to the game are here (linked to save a huge long post) so without further delay, here it is:

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  • Are you a Stay at Home Daddy or a Working Daddy? Very much a Working Dad – all in all, work takes about 45-50 hours a week. However, it is Monday to Friday which means weekends are very much protected time. I am very lucky to have Heidi all weekend and also an evening or 2 during the week, but it is hard work
  • Would you have it any other way? Yes. I would love to be a SAHD or a home working dad. However, my current job is remarkably stable compared to others and it helps us do the nice things in life.
  • Do you co-change dirty nappies? Even the very smelly ones? Being a single dad, there isn’t much choice. However, even when things were different, I wanted to do everything and give everything a go. However, we are past the nappy changing phase.
  • A little fairy gives you the possibility of breastfeeding? Are you going for it or do you run away? This little fairy gives me boobs?! I want this fairy in my life forever!!! Seriously, yes, I would give it a go, but wouldn’t lose any sleep over it if it didn’t work out, or it wasn’t comfortable. 
  • What is the one must-have item for a daddy? The ability to go into a room full of mums and not be intimidated. There was a playgroup on a Tuesday and I had the day off and so me and Heidi went, and out of 40 kids, I was the only male. It was a “moment” for me as it was the first time I felt in such a minority but the important thing was that it didn’t stop us having a good time (oh and the queue for the toilets was short!) I think I wrote about it here and is a post that I am particular proud of.
  • How many kids do you plan on having? Very much one and done
  • Lads’ nights? How often do you have them? Never. Weekends are for me and Heidi and I’m not going to pass away the opportunity to do bedtime or miss an evening with her for a few drinks
  • Your children’s favourite achievement? Making friends. While it sounds a bit soft, as she doesn’t go to nursery, it is always a bit of a worry. However, she is unbelievably social and has made 3 really good friends and on the back of that, I have made really good friends too – the perfect wingman!!
  • What is your best memory with your kid(s)? It was probably at the Rainbow Factory in Leeds which is a story/education/theatre childrens venue (read about it here) and Heidi and another girl acted out Little Red Riding Hood with the aid of the members of staff. Heidi was 2 and obviously needed help, but she was completely at ease being on a little stage, acting out the story in front of a couple of parents.
  • Name one thing you miss since being a daddy? The time to be able to exercise/play football as generally it is work and Heidi...
  • Weight gain, before pregnancy, during, after and now? And we mean YOU DADDY, not the mummy! I probably put on half a stone after birth. The difficult thing is trying to keep it at that!
  • Dream holiday with your kids? Florida, Disney. (enough said really!)
  • Dream holiday without your kids or even without the other half? (You’re allowed to dream) Maybe the other side of the Florida coast – there is a beautiful area between St Petersburg and Clearwater on the West Coast of Florida, which is so relaxing. Either that or a city hopping/sports watching holiday
  • How has your life changed since having kids? Beyond recognition… Currently going through divorce proceedings and generally everything has changed. Some for the better, some for the worse, but what has happened in the past has happened and you can only move forwards
  • Finish the sentence “It makes my heart melt when…” When Heidi is out and about with me and she will say to someone “That’s my daddy” so proudly. It also makes me slightly embarrassed!
  • Favourite beers brands and football team? I don’t drink (see the question re weight gain!) Used to follow Leeds United, but this is certainly one thing that has fallen away simply due to lack of time, as well as the fact we do kiddie football training on a Saturday afternoon
  • Huggies or Pampers? Pah! I’m a Yorkshire Accountant – it was Tescos when we were going through that stage…
  • Have you always wanted kids? Yes. It wasn’t a burning desire because I knew I needed to do my accounting qualification, and all the other time consuming parts of my life first, and then things would be set. It did happen at the perfect time and wouldn’t change it
  • Best part of being a dad? It is probably going out and about and being a kid once again. We have gone to so many more places than I ever knew existed and had so many new experiences. Yes, it is hard work, but it is worth it and I know that I have only one shot at it and so I am going to take every opportunity with both hands

To read more of my blog, please feel free to:

“Like” me on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/leedsdad

“Follow” me on Twitter @leedsdad

Email me at: info@leedsdad.com

or go onto my website: http://www.leedsdad.com


the Frenchie Mummy Blog