Recent events have given new meaning to the term stay-at-home dad. Atlanta Parent talked to these local Atlanta fathers about how they’re juggling work, home, and staying safe.
What new activity have you and your family started enjoying during this time?
Pickleball, which is a mix of ping pong and tennis played with a Wiffle ball. You can set it up anywhere as long as you have a hard surface. It’s a fast growing sport, as you can play it almost immediately, whether you’re 7 or 75 years old. We have a basketball court area in the backyard, and I bought a portable pickleball net on Amazon, and we put it on the court.
The kids have bikes, and we’ll go bike riding on vacation, but with the hills and traffic in Atlanta, it’s not the greatest place to ride bikes. We got all the bikes fixed and tuned up during the first week, and we’ve been riding a lot more.
We have two dogs, which have been a true blessing during coronavirus. We have a Lab and a German Shepherd who are eager to go on walks. There have been way more family walks.
We’ve been revisiting 80s movies with the older kids, watching “Sixteen Candles” or “The Breakfast Club.” Those have actually been hilarious, and the kids have been excited about that, which never would have happened without corona.
How are you balancing working at home with home/family responsibilities?
It’s always really been hard for me to have that balance. I work 24/7 between my investment and WSB jobs, and I fell prey to the 24/7 work cycle. Capital Investment Advisors went virtual on March 13. For WSB in Atlanta, I have a mic and a radio set up, so I can do live radio from my home office. Now, I get to see the kids throughout the day; I see them at breakfast, lunch and dinner. That’s been great seeing my kids more.
Do you have any meals that are your specialty?
I love to grill using my Big Green Egg. The use of that has gone up exponentially. I did a pork shoulder the other day. The two middle kids like to help with the grilling, and it’s the perfect thing to do, as it takes hours and hours and hours.
Any funny dad/kid(s) moments from this time?
I think just the classic being on a webinar, hearing the kids fighting outside of my office or the dogs barking. I made a video for going back to the office about the safety measures, washing your hands and sanitizing. I did the video with the kids and had them read the health provisions from the state of Georgia. It’s a fun little project, and people will actually pay attention, since it’ll be fun. Evenings have the feel of an eternal weekend and are fun. I don’t get to do as many family dinners nearly as much as I want to with my work schedule. Now, I have way more dinner and meals with the kids. It’s been a special time in general, and it’s been cool to spend more time with these boys and get to know them better, as they change and develop.
How do you plan to celebrate Father’s Day?
Just playing golf with three of my four kids. As good as a Father’s Day gift, getting to play golf with them. And grilling on the Big Green Egg. That’s the best possible day I can think of.
Any other advice for dads during this time?
It’s a marathon as a parent and a dad. Trying to figure out what each one of these kids like—I’ve got one that’s 100% sports, 100% sports and school, 100% music/guitar, 100% arts and crafts. They’re all amazingly different. Remember that it’s a marathon that takes we all have to figure out how they are as individuals in order to cultivate these kids over time and get to know them. It’s the best time ever to be a parent.
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