Earbuds for toddlers and little kids? Not so much…

I may be old school, but I like talking with people. I like social settings, and I even like overhearing other people’s conversations. It might be the writer in me, but us humans are actually pretty interesting. And my kids? They’re 10x interesting to me, with their chatter, their dreams, their interpretation of current events, and even their own conversations amongst themselves. What are they thinking? The tension comes in because we live in a…Read More

Six little words from my son…

I’ve been pretty quiet here on GoFatherhood this last week because the kids are away on spring break with their Mom. In Hawaii. Nice. I have total warm beach envy. As is doubtless common with joint custody, we alternate vacations on an even-year/odd-year schedule. Last spring break I took all three kids to Southern California and we rented a place on Laguna Beach, visited Disneyland, and spent a lot of time playing on the beach….Read More

In-App iPad Purchases Leads Dad to Charge Son with Fraud

I think this goes into the “you can’t make this stuff up” file: A 13yo boy in England ran up more than $5000 USD (£3700) in online purchases through the App Store through in-app purchases from within iPad games. So what did his father, a police constable do? When he couldn’t get Apple to void the charges, he turned his son in for fraud. Nice. Their claim is that the boy had no idea that…Read More

First electric razor? Maybe it should be the Arc 3…

A few days ago I wrote about giving my son an old Panasonic travel razor on his request, even though he’s only 12 and really doesn’t need to shave. In fact, as a blonde, he probably won’t need to shave for years. Still, I trim my goatee daily and it’s no surprise he wants to join the “dude club” with a razor of his own. While the little Panasonic razor I gave him has the…Read More

Why GoPro when you can Action Shot Camera?

Ah, the fun of the holidays. My son G-, 12, has been enamored of the GoPro Hero3 action video camera system, dreaming about being able to attach it to his helmet when bike jumping, skiing on the slopes or even just skateboarding around the neighborhood. Great fun, but darn expensive: the GoPro runs almost $199 without mounting kit, and if you want the top end unit it’s $399 plus whatever mounting accessories you’d want. That’s…Read More

Our Thanksgiving Included Epic Mickey 2

When a great opportunity falls in my lap, I’m not one to say no, so when we were asked if we’d like to give the new video game Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two a whirl, my kids and I remembered how we’d spent many hours exploring the dark Disneyland doppleganger Wasteland in the first Epic Mickey adventure and said “you bet!” The game — for the Xbox 360 — arrived a few days…Read More

Teens and Stealth Facebook Accounts

Another Dad emailed me a long, complicated question about teens and Facebook and I thought it’d be good to share it here and to ask for your thoughts too, once you’ve read the situation.  Here’s the scoop: “Our 13 year-old daughter secretly created a Facebook account in January 2011. She likely had help from a friend, who we think taught her to create the account with a fake name, and to block relatives so we…Read More

Travel and video calls. Not such a great idea?

I’ve been away from home for a few days, involved with a conference in Las Vegas. The glitz, the noise, the lights, the cigarette smoke, the sea of femme fatales, the usual Vegas scene. It’s easy to immerse yourself in the Vegas experience and forget about what’s going on at home, except for the fact that a surprising number of conversations eventually became discussions about our children. No more do we pull out our wallet…Read More

Younger Kids, Social Networks and Multiple Households, Oh My!

Like may children of divorce, my kids live in a world that’s split in two. Half of their lives they spend with me, and the other half they’re with their Mom. When we started this dual-house world, my ex and I sat down and tried to normalize our households, including bedtimes, expectations of chores, allowances, and similar. It kind of worked, but as the years have passed we have each moved into our own parenting…Read More

Cellphone etiquette at the dinner table. With kids.

I’m having a heck of a time coming up with coherent, logical and reasonable rules for cellphones in my family. The problem is, I like my cellphone and use it to keep in touch with my many friends and colleagues. There are times when it’s okay, of course, and other times — like driving — when it’s just verboten, but trying to figure out how to balance it or how to allot an appropriate amount…Read More

Online safety while you’re on vacation

A guest article by Dawn Altnam. One thing I’ve learned about over the past few years is the importance of social media safety during vacation time. Social media is great, don’t get me wrong; I’m a regular user of social media and I allow my kids to use it, too, within reason. But there are times when kids and adults can unknowingly put their home at-risk for burglary. With that in mind, here are a…Read More

Hang up and go to the bathroom already!

Okay, this is a pet peeve of mine, but it’s just so weird that I am astonished it’s so common: men who talk on  their cellphones while in a public bathroom. I’m not talking about a bluetooth headset so they can listen to a conference call while washing their hands before lunch, I’m talking about guys who are standing at a urinal or hunkered down in a stall actually going to the bathroom while chatting…Read More

Managing video game time during the summer

It’s the very beginning of summer vacation for my children – now 15, 12 and 8 – and that means that the favorite Nintendo Wii and Microsoft Xbox can be pulled out of the closet and hooked up to our TV system for fun and games. Yup, during the school year they’re completely off limits and sit untouched for months and months. Used to be a big deal but being firm about the issue means…Read More

Watch me clean my teeth. Really.

If you’ve been reading my blog, you know I already wrote a long article about dental hygiene, my kids, and the fancy new toothbrush I got. If not, pop over and read How I Clean My Teeth. Back? Great. So you know that Braun / Oral-B sent me this sophisticated power toothbrush to try out and write about. Oh, its formal name? It’s a mouthful: Oral-B ProfessionalCare SmartSeries 5000 with SmartGuide. Anyway, as the below video…Read More

Are video monitors putting babies under surveillance?

I get a rather astonishing number of pitches from tech companies seeking visibility in the dad and parenting space online, and it’s very cool. Lots of interesting products and innovations. After all, us parents need all the help we can get, and if it’s in the shape of a gadget, well, we like our smartphones and Internet, right, so how can anything that taps into that zeitgeist not be good? When Lorex Technology sent me their…Read More

How I Clean My Teeth

No, really, stick with me on this one. Braun / Oral-B sent me a super complicated smart toothbrush and as part of the campaign, I’m going to write about my existing oral hygiene, then share what it was like to use their device for a month. To get into the spirit of things, I’ve decided to do this first post as a tech unboxing and first impressions piece. Before I do, though, be aware that…Read More

Talking to kids about Facebook, privacy and safety

This will be the third year in a row that I have been given an opportunity to talk with 9th graders at the local high school about Facebook, privacy, online safety, etc. It’s interesting each year because the kids confirm to me that they are more active than we adults realize and that many of them lie to their parents — or simply sidestep the truth — about their participation in the online world. It’s…Read More

Teens, texting and vacations. What’s a Dad to do?

I’m usually pretty good at coming up with solutions to technological dilemmas with my children, but I have to admit I’m a bit stumped this time, and feel like the problem reflects more on me being too uptight and less on my daughter’s ability to be engaged, part of our group, and maintain her relationship with her boyfriend back home. Let me set the scene: My kids get a two week spring break, so in…Read More

Is Nokia’s patented tat the next tattoo my kids will want?

Actually, I lie. At this point in their lives — 15, 12, 8 — my kids are vehemently against tattoos, so much so that I occasionally taunt them by talking about a tattoo I want to get on my arm or my calf. They then predictably react with great judgment and insist “You will not get a tattoo, Daddy!” Not sure why I find their reaction entertaining, but maybe its because we see so many…Read More

Can I just get titanium teeth? My Waterpik review…

I do my best to take care of myself, including faithfully brushing my teeth twice-daily, but I have to be candid that I hate flossing. The string, the bleeding, the hassle, it’s something I really don’t like, so flying in the face of my dentist’s recommendation, I floss once in a blue moon. If that often. I even got those cool little floss pick things but I don’t use those either, they just stare at…Read More

Best Mobile iPhone Apps for Dads

This is a guest article… My Dad doesn’t complain about anything (except for maybe the neighbor’s dog doing his business on his recently manicured lawn). However, this makes him extremely difficult to buy birthday, Christmas, or even Father’s Day gifts for him. What could the guy want that seems so content with everything? Never fear, I’ve come up with the perfect list of best mobile apps for dads — for those impossible guys to buy…Read More