Friday, March 18, 2011

Babies and Fathers - Funny Clips!!

I know the feeling brother..... I know the feeling! Salute for your efforts Dads!! Enjoy your weekend! MAN UP!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Baby Wearing Wednesdays

Baby wearing is a big thing in the American parenting community, however, it is nothing new to indigenous cultures such as many African, Asian, and other "third world" cultures. In my understanding, the children in these cultures tend to be more mature and well adjusted to their society than children in cultures which are more technologically advanced. I believe that in many instances, technology decreases the human touch and compassion that is innate in the human spirit, and this is translated into their parenting style.

Nonetheless, I am very glad to see that American parents have begun to understand the importance of craddling and holding the child instead of the antiquated perspective of "self - soothing." In self soothing, it is recommended that the parent allow the child to cry until the baby stops. Imagine that you lost the ability to speak or use hand gestures to express yourself, and are in deep need of something and no one is coming to your aid. Imagine the frustration and bitterness you would feel toward people and your environment on a subconscious level. The same is for babies, in my opinion, who are taught to self soothe.

I as a father carry my children on my back with a thick piece of fabric or in a sling wrap. It soothes them in a way that is almost unexplainable and creates a love between us that is forever.

Here are the benefits of babywearing from

Sling babies cry less. Parents in my practice commonly report, "As long as I wear her, she's content!" Parents of fussy babies who try babywearing relate that their babies seem to forget to fuss. This is more than just my own impression. In 1986, a team of pediatricians in Montreal reported on a study of ninety-nine mother-infant pairs. The first group of parents were provided with a baby carrier and assigned to carry their babies for at least three extra hours a day. They were encouraged to carry their infants throughout the day, regardless of the state of the infant, not just in response to crying or fussing. In the control, or noncarried group, parents were not given any specific instructions about carrying. After six weeks, the infants who received supplemental carrying cried and fussed 43 percent less than the noncarried group.

2. Sling babies learn more. If infants spend less time crying and fussing, what do they do with the free time? They learn! Sling babies spend more time in the state of quiet alertness . This is the behavioral state in which an infant is most content and best able to interact with his environment. It may be called the optimal state of learning for a baby. Researchers have also reported that carried babies show enhanced visual and auditory alertness.

The behavioral state of quiet alertness also gives parents a better opportunity to interact with their baby. Notice how mother and baby position their faces in order to achieve this optimal visually interactive plane. The human face, especially in this position, is a potent stimulator for interpersonal bonding. In the kangaroo carry, baby has a 180-degree view of her environment and is able to scan her world. She learns to choose, picking out what she wishes to look at and shutting out what she doesn't. This ability to make choices enhances learning. A sling baby learns a lot in the arms of a busy caregiver.

3. Sling babies are more organized. It's easier to understand babywearing when you think of a baby's gestation as lasting eighteen months – nine months inside the womb and at least nine more months outside. The womb environment automatically regulates baby's systems. Birth temporarily disrupts this organization. The more quickly, however, baby gets outside help with organizing these systems, the more easily he adapts to the puzzle of life outside the womb. By extending the womb experience, the babywearing mother (and father) provides an external regulating system that balances the irregular and disorganized tendencies of the baby. Picture how these regulating systems work. Mother's rhythmic walk, for example, (which baby has been feeling for nine months) reminds baby of the womb experience. This familiar rhythm, imprinted on baby's mind in the womb, now reappears in the "outside womb" and calms baby. As baby places her ear against her mother's chest, mother's heartbeat, beautifully regular and familiar, reminds baby of the sounds of the womb. As another biological regulator, baby senses mother's rhythmic breathing while worn tummy- to-tummy, chest-to-chest. Simply stated, regular parental rhythms have a balancing effect on the infant's irregular rhythms. Babywearing "reminds" the baby of and continues the motion and balance he enjoyed in the womb.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Postpartum Depression In Men

Postpartum Depression In Men

Seriously?! Men can have this kind of thing happen to them?! Well obviously the answer is yes and NO we are not tough as nails and those that are, are probably suppressing their emotions which is very dangerous. With proper planning a father can be educated on what to expect so that it isn't a shock when his baby is born. But most conceptions aren't planned so therefore what can a father do now? Here are my thoughts:

1) Find an outlet... I don't mean hanging with your boys because that doesn't reinforce a solid family structure especially if your boys are single! The outlet will give you something to look forward to that can make the endless days and nights of raising a young child seem more enjoyable. You can even count down..."three more days until...."
2) If you do choose to watch TV don't watch shows which glorify scandalous subjects like extramarital affairs, swinging singles lifestyles etc.
3) Make sure the house smells nice when you come in. This is a subtle thing but aromatherapy is miraculous for changing one's mood.
4) Pain the walls of your home different bright colors. This visual stimulation works very similar to aromatherapy but through one's sense of sight. Bright flowers right by the main entrance works both one's sense of smell and sight.
5) Give hugs regardless of whether or not you feel like it. We have all heard the advice.... "if you smile constantly eventually you will become happy. The same is true for hugs...eventually you will become loving and compassionate.
6) Stare at your baby while the baby is asleep. This is the picture you want of your baby.... quiet. There is a peace that always comes over me when I watch my boys sleep because you can really see how innocent and worthy of your best they really are. Keep this mental picture and revisit it when you feel yourself slipping into the darkness.
7) Set a personal goal and work towards it. Make sure the goal is not one which will distract from the family but will somehow enhance the family.

Have more do share!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Music Monday... J Church

One of my all time favorite bands. I was in High School when I saw them at the Pipeline in Newark. I remember Lance Hahn, the lead singer/guitar player was just the nicest guy in the world. Asked me what I wanted to hear. He passed away a few years back from kidney failure at way to young of an age. One of my video but no matter, brilliant lyrics as always.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Tiger Mom Tuesdays

Last week a book was brought to my attention about some very radical parenting, at least by American standards. The name of the book is Tiger Mom and it is a synopsis of the parenting style of one Chinese descended woman now living in America. Without giving too much of the book away because I think it is a good read, the tactics of this one woman have brought about a whirlwind of controversy. Some of her methods include, no sleep overs, no socializing outside of an academic setting, viewing an A minus on a test as unacceptable, either violin or piano lessons to a high level of proficiency. This is just the tip of the iceberg! Strict can be an understatement by many regards but consider this fact..... China pumps out 400,000 engineers to Americas 60,000 annually. Check the economies of these two countries and you can see this fact is becoming a strong indicator of fiscal and productive prowess. What appears to be happening is that American culture seems to be good for entertainment purposes and very little else. Our TV shows and singers can found on every television world wide but not our products, goods or services.

It could be possible that the tactics used by this woman in Tiger Mom are against the norm of American parenting, I think a change in how we raise our children should arise in response to the decline of American values and productivity. How to change and what to change is up to the individual but necessary if we as a society are to stay afloat. Check the book and blog on! If you have already begun a parenting revolution within your own household, feel free to share right here on Father Faction...Man Up!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Eric Hornung, 20 Questions

Eric Hornung, Father Faction Comrade in Arms.

1. Who do you love? My family.

2. Kids? 2 Ages? Mihla 6, Tasha 4.

3. Profession? Tattoo Artist

4. Favorite memory of being a dad? When my kids are genuinely interested in the same things (painting, fishing) that I am into. But not because I pushed it on them.

5. Most important thing to teach your children?  Make good decisions and be responsible for them.

6. Favorite saying?  "I'd rather fail in originality than succeed in conformity" Herman Melville

7. Hobbies?  Fishing, talking about fishing, thinking about fishing, and creating fishing tattoos. Other than that I'd have to say, fishing.

8. Last song you listened to? "How I could just kill a man" Cypress Hill

9. Favorite place in the world? A riverside campsite at my grandfathers house.

10. Where do you live? Stillwater  NJ

11. Favorite drink? Iced Tea and Lemonade.

12. What did you eat for breakfast? Jalapeno Bagel

14. Person you most admire? People who keep their mouths shut. Why? I just admire people with restraint, who get their point across without saying too much.

15. Fantasy family vacation? Alaska 

16. Favorite word one of your kids mis-pronounces? Tasha call lips, "yips."

17. Weirdest thing you have found in your refrigerator? My wife's pickled eggs.

18. Moment you knew, you were a "dad"? Doing a tattoo to get the money to buy formula on the way home from work.

19. Favorite cartoon your kids watch that you can enjoy as well? Tom and Jerry

20. Kids and wife are out for the day, what do you do? Obviously, I am fishing.