My Amazing Dad celebrates the unconventional father who may not always get it right but certainly knows how to turn every day into something special. Perfect for Father’s Day!
What Makes a Dad – My Little Soapbox *Steps up and clears throat*
While we live in the liberal-leaning city of Austin, it was a shock when my husband became a stay-at-home dad when our oldest daughter was born and he almost immediately saw a lack of other dads while he was out in public with our daughter while I was working. He was lucky that Austin has a stay-at-home dad’s group, but considering the population here and the group he joined was realistically just a handful of dads who were regular participants, it was a huge disappointment to both him and I that more dads weren’t actively involved in child-rearing. It seemed like a sad fact that people just accepted; dads were often a no-show at children’s events. I wanted Bob to go out and enjoy activities with our kids whether it was at parks, social events for parents, or just a fun play date, but more often than not I’d get a text saying he was the only dad there and, quite honestly for the most part, it made it awkward for both him and the women. The cool thing is, Bob still went! My husband was a stay-at-home dad for four years and I am so proud of what we both did to make it possible even if Bob was the odd man out a majority of the time.
The dad-to-child ratio at parenting events didn’t stop when my husband went back to work. We now equally split our time doing school activities and being chaperones for our kids’ events and we are both keenly aware when dads are not there. I could go on and on; at pediatrician appointments, plays, birthday parties, field trips, and parent-teacher conferences – dads are always the exception as the dominant gender that show up for these things and I really want it to become the norm. I think it comes down to one important factor, if dads want to start making an impact in their kids lives, they have to start showing up.
It’s no secret that women were not welcomed with open arms into the workforce when they came out in droves in the 1960s and we are still fighting for equal pay and opportunities while simultaneously trying to figure out equal parenting and household distribution roles in our family. However, it’s not all up to us women/moms; men/dads have to be a big factor into that equation for equality of parenting and make the time to show up. Luckily, we have two girls that look at their dad as an equal partner in our marriage including raising them and the difference that I see between him and most other dads that I know is that my girls expect Bob to be there for them as much as me. What an honor for a dad and he doesn’t disappoint! Women are now more accepted as being aggressive in their careers, but it’s a recent revelation that wasn’t an easy road to get there. That adjustment to women vs. career vs. family should not be glossed over and there are definitely still biases out there on how mothers should behave, and the transition to a man being a ‘dad’ still has a long way to go and it all equally factors under that same umbrella. Men should not get a pass at their parental role in the United States in the 21st century and our society is still catching up for dads to be more (or, hopefully, equally) involved as parents so that their children (keenly aware and watching) don’t fall into the same trap when they become adults. With the push of maternity and paternity leave and more flexible working hours to take care of children, I think we are trying to get closer as a society to achieving that equality. There is no reason that moms and dads can’t split child-rearing duties equally today and it should be encouraged. I like reading books to my daughters that show a dominant male role in children’s lives because while it is true in our household, it is important that we start seeing that change as the norm across the board. As I’ve seen in my own family, when both parents are equally involved, the child wins.
*Steps off Soapbox*
My Amazing Dad! Yes, this is a book review! I swear!
My Amazing Dad celebrates the father who may not always get it right (and no parent is perfect!) but certainly knows how to turn every day into something special. This father is good at making mazes, getting his kids to school, making the best bubble baths and reading and telling bedtime stories to his children. In other words, he is an active part of his children’s lives. Yay! Amazing dads aren’t superheros, but they are to their kids, and that’s what makes them special. With bright illustrations from award-winning illustrator Tom Jellett and minimal text by award-nominated Ezekiel Kwaymullina, My Amazing Dad is a theme I’d like to see more often in children’s book and one that I like to celebrate. We are getting there, America, so let’s keep the momentum going to have dads as actively involved in their kids lives as women.
Dedicated to my husband, Bob, who is the most amazing dad!
About the Author: Ezekiel Kwaymullina is the son of acclaimed author Sally Morgan and has collaborated with her and his siblings, Blaze and Ambelin, on several novels and picture books. He is a full-time writer in Perth, Australia.
About the Illustrator: Tom Jellett is an award-winning children’s book illustrator. He is based in Sydney, Australia.
About Sky Pony Press: Sky Pony Press, with Good Books, Racehorse and Arcade imprints, publishes a broad range of books for young readers—picture books for small children, chapter books, books for middle grade readers, and novels for young adults. Our list includes bestsellers for children who love to play Minecraft; stories told with LEGO bricks; books that teach lessons about tolerance, patience, and the environment, and much more. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.
List Price: $ 16.99 (Currently on sale through Amazon Prime for $13.70)