Location: Scottsdale, AZ
Married to: Allison (@allisonpants)
Occupation: Special Education Teacher by day, play in a rock n’ roll cover band at night and make wood rings and necklaces in my spare time for our shop Spirit Bee (@spiritbee_woodworks)
Rug Rats: daughter, Lemon
FAVORITE MUSICAL ARTIST: Huey Lewis and the News. I actually got to meet Huey in person when I was a teenager! One of the best moments of my life, he is such a talented musician and is one of the reasons I have played musical all my life.
TOP 3 FAVORITE THINGS TO DO WITH YOUR KID(S): My favorite things to do with Lemon are cooking/baking gluten free treats (we have a cooking show Cooking with Lemon on YouTube, and we are also on Instagram), being out and about at the park or at dinner with friends and traveling to new places with her. I love seeing the world through her eyes. Nature and animals are a huge part of our lives and we love to garden and take “nature walks” together and visit the zoo as much as we can.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE: My personal style is simple – jeans, a cool t-shirt and work boots. I am a Special Education teacher and have a garden at our school (my wife works at the same school) so I am often out digging in the dirt with my students. I also love being outside so I don’t often wear things that are too fancy and can’t get dirty, but I do like to be comfortable and still look cool. I am also a woodworker, so I am often covered in dust and glue, thats why I am found mostly in jeans. We live in Arizona where it is nice most of the year so I often wear cargo shorts and flip flops, or swim trunks, all summer long.
PERSONAL THOUGHTS ON WHAT MODERN FATHERHOOD MEANS TO YOU: Being a Modern Father is doing whatever it takes for your family. Sometimes you have to get a second job, or be the one who does dishes, or set up a camera to film your daughter putting makeup on you for her pretend “makeup tutorial”. You just do it. You know that you will help your family in whatever they need, defying gender “roles” and picking up the slack by cleaning up while your wife puts your baby to bed. And, you are around as much as you can be, to share in all the experiences and fun with your family, and to help wherever they need you. Sometimes you kiss “boo, boos” and sometimes you get things down from the attic, being a modern father is stepping up and doing what needs to be done for the people you love.
WHAT IS ONE THING YOU WANT YOUR KID(S) TO KNOW: I want Lemon to know that she can do and be anything in her life. She can be unique and be herself, she doesn’t have to conform to society’s standards for a “girl”, she can do whatever makes her happy. she can defy gender roles, be educated and succeed in whatever she puts her mind to. There are no limits in this world for her, and I will try to encourage her to pursue her dreams, whatever they are. I love that she enjoys music and singing as much as I do, and hope that she will always have a love for music throughout her life. I also want her to appreciate the differences in everyone else, be accepting and tolerant of all people, and always be kind and grateful for her life.
HOW HAS BECOMING A FATHER CHANGED YOU: Becoming a father has definitely changed me – you aren’t just living for you anymore, you are, instead, doing your best for your family. Sure you lose some of your freedom, but its all about finding a balance; being you and being a dad, finding things to do with your kids that you enjoy too. Having a girl can be tough for a dad, but you adapt and you find things to do with her that don’t drive you nuts (like playing Barbies!). You do nails, having a cooking show, teach your daughter how to make rings or do kung fu in the backyard, things you enjoy doing and teaching her. You realize that there’s a bigger picture now, and every choice you make and everything you do, you do for your family, your legacy.
WHO HAS BEEN YOUR ROLE MODEL IN LIFE: My own dad has been a huge role model in my life. He has taught me that hard work pays off and how to do most things around the house by myself. My fondest memories of him are working on our house, painting a fence, and talking and laughing the whole time. It’s how our family bonded and I hope to instill this work ethic on my own kids too. Working together on a home can be a shared experience, and I love it when my wife and daughter help me with projects. I take pride in our house and want it to be the best place for me and my family. My dad also taught me a love of music and this is something I also want to pass down to my future generations.