Administrator’s Note: We here at TTAF are taking a break from blogging for the rest of the year. We feel that it is important that we take some time off to spend with friends and family, and also to relax a bit as the past year has been hectic for all four of us. We cannot thank you enough for reading, commenting on and sharing TTAF. We hope to use this time off to create more posts that we hope you will enjoy. While we are on hiatus we would still love to hear from you via the comments section and also by writing guest posts. We are looking for writers from all backgrounds, yes even women, to contribute to the site and if you are interested please send us an email. We are seeking to create a community experience with this blog and in order to do so we want to hear from you.
In the meantime we will be counting down the top fifty posts (out of 353) from this year. Once we are done with that we will get back to our regular blogging. As you read these posts feel free to share them on any number of social media sites with the buttons found below each post and above the comments section. Have a great holiday season.
-Matt, Drew, Josh, and Curtis-
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The other night I was watching Grey’s Anatomy with my wife.
Let’s stop right there to discuss the first lesson here. Stop watching Grey’s Anatomy. Even if it’s with your wife. This goes alongside the Bachelor(ette) and Keeping up with the Kardashians (and according to Drew, Hockey) as shows you just shouldn’t be watching.
That said, I was watching Grey’s Anatomy with my wife the other night and there was a running gag throughout the show in which the staff at the hospital would look at Dr. Shepherd, played by Patrick Dempsey, with a disapproving glare as he carried his adopted daughter to and from the nursery. While he thinks they are staring because his daughter is African American, the reality is they were staring because he hadn’t fixed his daughter’s hair that morning, even though he had obviously spent a good amount of time on his own. Seriously, look at that guy’s hair. It isn’t until he’s about to reprimand one of his co-workers that Miranda Bailey pulls him away and confronts him, saying “What is wrong with you?! She was not staring at you because Daddy’s white and his daughter’s black, she was staring at you two because daddy has nice hair, maybe even perfect hair, but for whatever reason his daughter’s hair is thirty-one flavors of wrong. It’s hard on the eyes! Do your baby’s hair!”
I had to laugh when watching this. For one thing, Derrick Shepherd was getting yelled at by Miranda Bailey, and I always like it when he gets yelled at . . . by anyone. But more so because I realized I am the exact same way. Don’t get me wrong, my hair doesn’t garner me the nickname McDreamy from my coworkers (I’ve stuck with clippers on the side faded to a scissor cut top since I was about 4), but I have a three year old daughter and am (or was) just as oblivious as to how to even begin fixing her hair. I knew it, my wife knew it, and my daughter even knew it. When she would ask for a pony tail before school, I would simply stick a rubber band in her pocket and tell her to give it to Ms. Heather so she could fix her hair when she got to school.
Again, I don’t condone watching Grey’s Anatomy, but if you have a daughter and you want to be a better dad, and a better man in general, take Miranda Bailey’s advice and learn to fix your baby’s hair!
Wanting to learn for myself, I asked my wife if she’d show me the basics this weekend. Here’s your extremely simplified introductory primer. We’ll cover the basics: brushing long hair (it’s not as easy as you’d think), a pony tail, and braids.
First of all, brushing a girl’s hair. If you haven’t tried it, don’t laugh. This needs to be talked about. When my daughter’s hair really got long and I first tried to brush it after a bath, I did so the same way I’d do my own hair . . . my own hair that’s an inch and a half long. I put the brush as far into her hair, and as close to the top of her head, as I could. And then I pulled.
If you have ever tried this method, you know what happens. This:
Now it’s the morning. You’re getting your daughter ready for school . . . and she asks for a pony tail. Have no fear. Here is what you need to know.
Step one: “look to the sky”
As your daughter is looking up, her hair will fall naturally and will make the perfect pony tail much simpler of a process. While her hair falls, take her hair in your hand like my wife is illustrating here, and brush out the pony tail if you need to:
Step two: pull through, twist, repeat.
While it’s a simple process, the actual wrapping of the pony tail does take some practice. Apparently, it’s good to have the hair band on your hand so that after you grab the hair, you can shimmy it onto the pony tail. After you do so, you simply pull the pony tail through, twist it around and repeat . . . over and over until it’s tight:
To finish, pull your daughter’s hair apart to push the hair band up and tighten the pony tail:
That, sir, is how to put your daughter’s hair in a pony tail. If you’ve never tried it, don’t laugh. It is not easy. Here’s my attempt:
One more for you. If you’ve mastered the basic pony tail or just want the other moms at the day care to envy your wife because of your sheer awesomeness, here’s how to give your daughter braids. Braids!
Step one: part your daughter’s hair down the middle.
This could very well be one of the hardest parts. Seriously, I can’t part hair that long to save my life. Now that I think about it, I can’t even part my own hair that well.
Step two: divide each side into it’s own three sections.
Yes, three sections. So far that’s a total of four sections . . . try and keep up. As you hold all three sections with your two hands, move one of the outside sections over top of the middle section. Let’s start with the right. This now become the middle section. Then move the left section over top of the now middle (but previously right) section. Are you following me? Go back to the right side (which was previously the middle) and do the same. The trick here is that you alternate from left to right, but always keep whatever section is in the middle steady. Look at the pictures below and see if you can make sense of what I just said:
Right over middle. Left over new middle (old right). Right (old middle) over new middle (old left). Left over middle. Right over middle . . . . . . . Then tie the end the same way you did the pony tail.
Now for my attempt:
Here’s the comparison of my wife’s braid and mine:
You may have noticed in the pictures we took while I was working with my daughter that she has a giant tube of M&M Minis in her hand. Here’s the deal: three-year-olds don’t always sit still. When you’re yanking on their hair and taking a really long time doing so, they especially don’t always sit still. There are a number of remedies for this. I’ve read places that say to keep them distracted by talking with them about an unrelated topic, or by giving them a task to complete.
Let it be known that I do not condone bribery . . . but also let it be known that offering your child a giant tube of M&M Minis if they promise to stop moving around is a great way to get your daughter to sit still.
So let’s recap. Stop watching Grey’s Anatomy. Also, stop sending your daughter to school with and tangled mess and her hair band in her pocket. Be a better dad and learn to fix her hair.
Let us know if you try it and let us know how it goes. I hope this helps!