Fatherhood²: 10 Presents Your Husband, Brother or Dad will LOVE this Christmas

December 8, 2011 at 5:30 pm

As a father who often struggles with buying presents for people, I’m a big fan of the concept of wishlists – my Amazon one has served me very well over the years, and our wedding wishlist produced presents we’re still using now. But what do you do if you need to buy for somebody who hasn’t got a wishlist, or who refuses to tell you what they want?

My next step is usually those “Gifts for…” lists on sites like Not on the Highstreet or IWOOT – but they’re usually full of a LOT of filler and not much killer.

So, I decided to take the initiative and ask some fellow dads, brothers and sons what they REALLY want for Christmas, in order to compile a list of suggestions which I’m pretty sure EVERYONE will find something they want on. So whether you’re a dad looking to fill up your own wishlist, or a child looking to surprise your dad with a gift they’ll love, I present to you 15 suggestions for presents that the father in your life is bound to love…

Fatherhood²: Routine – The Joys and the Sorrows

October 19, 2011 at 8:00 pm

I don’t profess to be anywhere near an expert in parenting – in fact, I’d go as far as to say that in a lot of respects I’m nothing more than an amateur. But what I DO know is what has worked (and not worked) for my children. Routine is one thing that has made our lives a LOT easier – and occasionally a little trickier…

The Joy of Routine

As a parent, routine is your friend. Routine can make your life a lot easier. Little children LOVE routine – they gobble it up, and it gives structure and sense to their chaotic little lives.

Take bedtime for instance. Before I became a parent, I would regularly scoff when I heard about parents who would stick laboriously to routines for their children. “Look at them, missing out on a beer because they HAVE to give little Timmy a bath at a certain time – what FOOLS!” I would say. But now that I’m a father of two, I recognise how foolish I was. Having a bedtime routine is joyous.

Fatherhood²: Guest Post – When a Part of a Dad Dies

October 10, 2011 at 7:18 pm

It’s good but it’s not right…

There are some things in life that are wrong, even when they’re right. Things that you know should happen, are appropriate and even to be expected, but you still don’t need to welcome them.

Its birthday season in the Wall household. My eldest was 9 last week and the youngest is 6 this week. As part of the celebrations, my wife has spent months transforming the office into a new bedroom, so the girls – who have previously had to share – now have their own room. The rooms look fantastic and the girls are extremely excited.

Fatherhood²: Which is Smarter – A 3 year-old or Some Pigeons? [VIDEO]

October 9, 2011 at 5:50 pm

A short video which amused me quite a bit, taken this weekend when we went to feed the ducks on the Thames…

Fatherhood²: How Tricky is it Taking a 5-week-old Baby on Holiday?

August 15, 2011 at 5:19 pm

Having just returned from a week’s holiday with our family, I thought I’d share a few my thoughts on travelling with a very small baby. I’m by no-means the expert, but having been told that we were mad for even thinking of taking such a young child (just 5 weeks old on the day we left) away, I was quite pleased that things turned out fine. So if only to provide some reassurance to other parents who are wondering whether or not to holiday with their baby yet, here’s my view:

Having travelled on many flights which included babies, I’m pretty sure I’m still not comfortable with taking a baby on an aircraft, unless you strictly have to. Not only is their screaming a little bit annoying for the other passengers, but I can’t imagine the pressures that air travel puts on your body can be very good for a tiny baby.

Fatherhood²: Five Days in, is it Double Trouble?

July 6, 2011 at 7:22 pm

Before little Frederic was born on Friday, I’d speculated on a few occasions that having a second child couldn’t possibly be as hard as the first one – something which I’m still just about clinging on to now, five days in to little Freddie’s life.

Some things have definitely been easier, some things just as hard. And of course, having an older brother or sister brings with it a whole new bunch of challenges which I’d not spent much time thinking about. Here’s a few of my observations on fathering a second child, from where I am sat (or more accurately, slumped) on the evening of Freddie’s 5th day…

Fatherhood²: A £50 Birthday Card For Your Son? Priceless, Apparently!

May 13, 2011 at 7:20 pm

As I mentioned in a post earlier this week, I’ve been spending my evenings this week working on Robert’s birthday card. Not a card for me to give him on his birthday – no, this is (or so I thought) FAR more important than that. This is the card we’ve sent in to the BBC Cbeebies channel, where they will (hopefully) show it on the TV on Robert’s birthday.

We’ve never gone to the bother of doing this before – though we have friends who have done it every year of their child’s life, so we felt like we owed it to Robert to try this year. After all, this is the first year where he’ll actually appreciate seeing his little face on the TV (I don’t see much point in doing this for a 1-year-old!) so it seemed like the right time.

Fatherhood²: Compassion Fatigue? Not for this Dad!

April 17, 2011 at 7:27 pm

I should start by thanking Sara for this post – despite my pleas, she refuses to write me a guest post for this blog, but regularly gives me topics to write about when I’m suffering writer’s block. Apparently, in her pregnant state, Sara can’t watch the current NSPCC adverts without crying. This reminded me of something I’d been thinking about for a while – charity.

I wouldn’t class myself as the most charitable person – I’ve always liked to do my bit where I can, but I’m sadly not the sort of person that has a regular payment set up, or who buys the Big Issue religiously. I’m lucky enough to work with a few charities as part of my job, and will happily support them when they hold events (the Prince’s Trust being a good example). But ever since I’ve become a parent, I find myself drawn a lot more to charities – especially those that are associated with children.

Fatherhood²: Guest Post – The Only Dad in the Park

March 24, 2011 at 4:58 pm

We live in the 21st Century. Apparently we are modern, diverse and multi-cultural. Women can vote. Men use moisturizer. We certainly don’t confirm to the patriarchal norms laid down by our unenlightened pre-historic forefathers.

I went to the park with my two young sons today after collecting them from school. It was a beautiful sunny afternoon, full of hope for a decent Spring, and the park soon filled up with their friends and other kids from nearby schools. After a while I looked around and realised that I was the only member of the male gender in the vicinity over the age of seven…

Fatherhood²: The Real Economics of Baby Number 2

March 23, 2011 at 8:50 pm

Let me start this post with a disclaimer: As a father, I would never advocate having or not having a child based on anything but a desire to start a family. Kids can be a pricey business, but if you are telling yourself “I can’t afford to have kids yet”, you could be waiting for a while. However, unlike weddings, where you can (like we did) go for a cheap option to save yourself waiting forever while you save up, you can’t really do kids “on the cheap”. Well, I wouldn’t want to anyway. So thinking about your finances before baby is born is probably a wise move.

Having said that, I won’t state the obvious by telling you how expensive it can be when stocking up for your child’s imminent arrival. Instead, I wanted to explore a question a few friends and colleagues have asked me recently. Namely: “Having another child must be expensive, right?”…