Do This! Three Dad Rules for Keeping Your Family Happy

Father’s Day is just days away, and this week a few Houston dads have graciously contributed their thoughts on parenting. Today, Justin W., husband of Houston Moms Blog’s own contributor Christieshares his Dad Rules for keeping his wife and family happy.

The Dads Take Over | Houston Moms Blog

If you played video games growing up, this post is basically equivalent to the cheat codes that help you win the game. If you don’t like reading novels, these are the CliffsNotes. If it feels like you can’t seem to do anything right in your wife’s eyes anymore, YOU ARE WELCOME! Below, you will find three Dad Rules; this is a fool-proof method to doing a few little things that help keep everyone happy.

DAD RULE 1 :: Do something nice for once!

I have a bad habit of getting into routines and NEVER veering. Maybe that doesn’t sound bad, but it’s not great. I get up, take the kids to daycare, go to work, go to lunch, back to work, and come home to sit my lazy butt on the couch to unwind from sitting my lazy butt in a cubicle all day. Hard work, I know.

DO THIS > Set an alarm for at least once a month to stop on your way home from work and buy your wife a “just because” gift. She puts in hard work as a mom {and, if we’re being honest, as a wife too}. She deserves a little something extra to show her how much you appreciate her, even if it’s just flowers or her favorite dessert. You are literally buying brownie points.

DAD RULE 2 :: Post about your fam sometimes!

Not to complain about my wife {because she’s totally going to read this!}, but have you ever gotten in trouble on a holiday for not posting a family picture on social media to show the world how proud you are of what you have? Well, I have…often. In my defense, I don’t really post anything on social media anymore unless it’s the once a year picture of the awesome steak I ate, or the cabinets that I built with MY bare hands! This latest time, the reprimanding was for easily my worst offense:: Mother’s Day. For everything this woman does, taking care of the kids so I can have some free-time, keeping our house clean {It’s not 1950 anymore, so I should probably have an equal share in this}, working a full time job, and maintaining some form of her own social life, you’d think that I’d be bowing at her feet and serving her however possible, in hopes that she doesn’t leave me when she realizes how far down the ranks she actually married. No, I basically just procrastinated my way to Mother’s Day hoping that some unforgettable idea would pop in my mind. It did not. In fact, I waited so long that I didn’t do probably the easiest thing I could have in telling my entire network of friends how awesome she is.

DO THIS > For guys like me that apparently crumble under the pressure of coming up with good gift ideas, try to share pictures of your family more often. People do enjoy seeing your family, and probably even more so than that amazing craft beer you had last week. Your wife also likes to know you’re proud of your family!

DAD RULE 3 :: Get out of the freaking house!

We have a two-and-a-half year old and a three-month old. We don’t leave the house unless we are going to see family nearby, or else we’re packing up everything we own to survive life outside of the compound. We did, however, recently go to a relative’s wedding a few hours away. Let me tell you: as stressful as I thought it would be, I was actually surprised to find myself and my wife rejuvenated instead. It really felt like a mini-vacation. We had time to get out of our normal safe space and just hang out intentionally together. Now don’t get me wrong, a 5-hour car ride with 2 small kids is a risk, but it definitely paid off this time. When we got back home, we were all exhausted, but what it really did, outside of giving us all time together, was give us all a deeper appreciation for OUR house. Sometimes the place that we’re most comfortable is also the place that we stress out the most. This should help that.

DO THIS > This is the hardest of the 3 Dad Rules to master because you have to find somewhere that brings some amount of joy to everyone involved. I would recommend places like the Houston Zoo, the Houston Museum of Natural Science {my wife loves the Cockrell Butterfly Center there}, or the biggest playground you can find {really, if the kids aren’t happy, no one is}. Sometimes staying home seems more enjoyable in theory, but the fact is there is life outside of your house, and it can be a recharge for everyone.

That’s it! Stick to this list of Dad Rules like your life depends on it, because–for sanity’s sake–it does!


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