Awesome Dad Stuff: Tonka Trucks


It’s all coming back to me.

This afternoon I took my daughter on a trip to the park. This particular park has a huge sand pit. When I say huge I mean like the size of a football field. It had rained the day before so was kind of icky. I never actually took my daughter out of her stroller. However I did get to take some pictures that reminded me of my childhood.

I think every guy my age grew up with Tonka trucks. The Tonka trucks of my youth were big and metal. They were toys that were meant to be beat upon and still keep rolling. My friends and I spent countless hours out in the back yard playing with three giant yellow Tonka trucks. The trucks stayed in the back yard sand box 24/7. I don’t recall ever bringing them in the house. They with stood snow, rain, and 100 degree days. Sure over time the paint peeled and they rusted, but such was the life of a Tonka truck. Over the years pieces broke off, but the trucks were still great fun.

So today at the park I see these three Tonka trucks and had a flash back to the sand box of my youth. These modern Tonka trucks are plastic. They are still big, and they are still tough. These trucks like the ones in my youth have been left out in the elements, they have been broken. They are still fun though. Kids play with these trucks everyday and have a ball.

Being a father is the most incredible experience I could have ever asked for. I knew that I was going to have a blast raising my daughter. What I did not expect was to relive my childhood. With each new phase of her life I am brought back to my own childhood. I try to see life though her eyes. When I try I go back to that place when I was a child. It brings me such joy to watch my daughter have some of the same experiences that I had.


Friday Night

It is Friday night at 8:30pm and my wife and I are laying in bed with our computers on, while watching ESPN. This is our lives. We put our daughter to bed an hour ago. It is not the most exciting thing ever, but there is a place and a time for it. Work life balance. This should be the last Friday like this for awhile.

I am constantly struggling with the work and family balance. This week has been particularly bad. I have a few big projects going. I am creating a new portfolio, retouching a huge project, had a huge shoot, and am switching from Nikon to Canon.

I am in the process of creating a new portfolio to show to some advertising agencies that I have not worked with. So in addition to my normal work I am having to edit a new portfolio, and then shoot what I need to add to the portfolio. I get to do this on top of my normal work and my personal work. I have one of the creative directors that I work with laying out my portfolio for printing and creating some new marketing pieces with me. With a little bit of work I think this project is going to win at least a local addy award. A bit part of being in my profession is showing portfolios of your work to agencies. I have slacked off on this for the last five years. Putting a portfolio together to show the best of five years and show where I want to go is a tough thing.

I am working on retouching some files for a doctors office that I photographed two weeks ago. I have about 20 files left and I want to finish them this weekend. So I will be up until at least midnight working. Then I will be up by 6am before my wife and my daughter to try and wrap up and get things going for the morning. Retouching interiors and exteriors is not the worlds hardest work, but it can be time consuming to ensure that everything is straight, and all of the colors and tones are consistent.

I’m also in the process of switching from Canon to Nikon. This is going to be a great move for me. The files from the Nikon D800 are way better than anything coming from Canon. Selling my old gear is actually pretty time consuming. On Monday I have some Nikon gear arriving at the house that I can’t wait for.

We do have some cool stuff going on though. Today we had some amazing weather so my daughter and I were able to go to the park for a few hours this afternoon. This weekend we plan on going to the aquarium and taking a walk.

Anyway it is time for me to get back to work.

A Mans Morning

I am a pretty avid redditor. The other day on the subreddit everyman should know there was a post about what a real mans morning is. Below is my take on a mans morning.

Hear toddler crying.
Pry eyes open and shlep to toddlers room.
Calm toddler and change diaper.
Contemplate shower.
Skip shower.
Usher wife and toddler into big jacked up Land Cruiser. Vroom!
Take toddler to daycare.
Starbucks with the wife.
Get into town and realize that I forgot a clients project at the house.
30min drive back to house for client project.
30min drive back to town to deliver client project.
Wait 30min for client to arrive.

A Day in the life of a dad.

Over the last 18 months my life has been completely transformed.

Here is my to do list today.

1. Get Em ready for day care

2. Take Out Trash

3. Follow up biz e-mail

4. Biz meeting at Starbucks

5. Swing by the studio to do some work

6. Retouch 3 photos for a client

7. Do dishes at home

8. Pick up Em from daycare

9. Fix Dinner and finish cleaning house

I will be the first to admit that I am not the greatest at balancing home life and work. Especially on days when Em does not have daycare.


Welcome to my blog. First post are always kind of strange. I never know quite how to begin. So here it goes…

I’m a husband, a father, and a creative. I love my wife, my daughter, and my job. My job is awesome. I get to be both a stay at home dad and a commercial and advertising photographer. Having a job that I love has always been important to me. It amazes me that I have been able to make a career for myself by doing what I love.

This blog is honestly going to just be my musings about being a father. Hopefully it will be useful, funny, and awesome.