Welcome to Meet a Dad! Here is where we like to feature an at home dad from within our community, through interviews conducted by Mike Andrews
Welcome back to Meet A Dad! Where we feature real At-Home Dads in the National At-Home Dad Network Community. It has been awhile since we have had a post here but we are back! Today we are featuring Marc Mitchell who we all know in the S@HD community as Cuda. Cuda has been a major part of the community for over a year. He is a prolific poster in the National At-Home Dad Network Facebook Group and is always there to help and support all the new dads that come to the group for help. He attended his first convention last year on Denver and blew everyone away with his over the top personality and friendly demeanor. He is an at-home dad to 3 kids and lives in Florida where he makes us all jealous with frequent trips to Disney World.
1. How many kids do you have and what are their ages?
I have three; Kyler is 4 and the Twins Kennedy (girl) and Kole (boy) are 2.
2. Why did you become a stay at home dad?
Unfortunately, it was with the loss of a job. I actually went on 20 interviews in the first 6 months with no luck.
3. Other than spending time with your kids, what do you like about being an at home parent?
It’s actually very calming. Don’t get me wrong there is a lot of chaos and hectic points. I was a teacher and there was daily surprise chaos. I mean in my last year I had a kid throwing things around the room and yelling fumble and jumping on it. I just don’t have anyone really breathing down my neck. I don’t have the crazy changes to standardized testing to worry about. It’s just very calming in a controllable chaos kind of way.
4. What do you like least?
There is quite a bit. There is some confusion about what I want from people. I it’s very restricting as well. I love going out with the kids but my 2 year old twins make it rough and then there the stares and comments from people. Apparently,
I’m always babysitting my kids…when I was teaching some parents thought I was a babysitter.
5. What is your normal daily routine like?
I wake up about 6:30 and while my wife showers and gets ready for the day I make her coffee, breakfast and lunch. Somewhere between 7:00 and 7:30 she leave for work. Our oldest will wake up anywhere from 6:30-7:30 and watch shows on my bed while I take a shower at 7:30. After I’m showered I’ll make breakfast for him and the twins. Then they wake up between 8:00 and 9:00. After breakfast we will have about an hour of free play. I’ll read a story and let the play more. Then it’s lunch at 12:30 with a nap for the twins following from 1 till they wake up. The time varies depending on when they actually fall asleep. My oldest will wear his eye patch for two hours during the twins nap time. He gets his iPad during his patch time as well. During this time I’ll clean prep dinner and, get anything else I need done. Depending on when the twins wake up we have free tv time and or free play. Depending on the day my wife gets home anywhere from 4:30-5:00 with the latest being 11:00. We do dinner at 5:30 after dinner we have free play with TV. We do bedtime routine at 8:00 starting with reading a story then say goodnight to the moon followed by marching off to bed for the twins. Kyler stays up about 45 minutes then he is off to bed too. I get a little quite time when the wife goes to our room to work on assignments.
6. If you were to change one thing about yourself as a dad, what would it be?
I guess it would be either my volume or us getting out more. I am very loud and wish I could tone it down some. I would love to get out more too.
7. What do you like to do in your spare time?
I love to either watch movies or play madden on my Xbox
8. What advice would you give a new At Home Dad?
Be present and own it. I started a blog that I actually think a few people read it. Along with the blog I started an alter ego a Facebook page and Twitter handle to chronicle our adventures. It’s a lot of fun and gives my wife a glimpse into the day.
9. What does your spouse/partner do?
My wife is a teacher.
10. What is your best memory of your father?
My dad was always there. He would always show up for every sporting event to cheer us on..him and mom both.
11. The worst? How did this effect the way you parent your kids?
I honestly can’t think of one.
12. What has your experience been as far as how others see your role as an At Home Dad?
Really depends…I’ve had high fives and looks of confusion so I guess you can say I’ve seen them all. I also get hints about job opportunities here and there too. It’s a variety of experiences.
13. What cartoon character are you and why?
Batman?!? Because duh it’s Batman and he is awesome. Also it’s a running joke with my son he would do Old McDonald.’s farm with family members.. “And on this farm he had a daddy, with an I’m Batman here…” You get the picture. And I’m Batman!
14. Who is the better cook in your home? What is your best meal to cook?
I am the better cook. The go to meal is a Chili Cheese Mac from Weight watchers.
15. Are there any “Dad Groups” in your area that you participate in? If not, what do you do to connect with other parents?
No there aren’t. I have a few guys we did poker night when the wives would do Bunco we have had one in a while. There is an at home dad half hour away or so we keep trying to meet up but schedules are hard.
16. Favorite kid’s book growing up?
It was this scratch and sniff Christmas book.
17. What is your least favorite kid’s show?
Wow I could go on for hours on this one but narrowing it down to one I would say The Hive. It’s about bees and a wasp with British accents. It made me want to jab pencils in my ears and eyes it’s was awful.
18. What was your best moment as a father?
I would say the births. Both care toon went great.
19. What was your scariest?
I would say it’s a tie so all three kids have one. My oldest Kyler had a tonsillectomy that was nerve wrecking. Kennedy had a poor APGAR score at birth an wasn’t responding but breathing. Just very inactive. Kole took a nose dive off the back of the couch. My wife was on her way home I handed him to her cause it was easier than me leaving. He fell asleep on the way to the ER and my wife couldn’t wake him up…with the head inure we feared the worst. Turns out he just wanted a nap.
20. What do you want your legacy to be? How do you want your kids to remember you?
I want to be an inspiration to my kids. I want them to know matter what they do I’ll be proud of them. I want my kids to remember what kind of father I was and know how important it is to be involved. When I get comments out in public I generally ignore cause I don’t want my kids to see me be snarky with people and always look for the good.