Monday, January 9, 2012

50 Rules for Dads of Daughters (by Michael Mitchell)

Hey guys... I don't "re-post" things from other blogs very often or EVER to date, BUT... this is on topic, worth the read, and very very moving. I'm not lying when I say that I spent 20 minutes reading this because every 3rd rule I had to stop and grab a new tissue... I'm not afraid to say it... I cried like a 4 year old school girl reading this. A big thanks to Wyatt for sending me this.

About Michael Mitchell
Michael Mitchell is an (almost) thirty-something dad who blogs daily tips and life lessons for dads of daughters at He spends his days practicing the arts of fatherhood and husbandry, while attempting to be a man of God and a professional raiser of philanthropic funds. On the rare occasion he’s not tied up with the aforementioned and other pursuits of awesomeness, he enjoys fighting street gangs for local charities and drinking from a cup that’s half full. Bookmark Life To Her Years, follow Michael on Twitter, and “like” him on Facebook for more “rules”.

1. Love her mom. Treat her mother with respect, honor, and a big heaping spoonful of public displays of affection. When she grows up, the odds are good she’ll fall in love with and marry someone who treats her much like you treated her mother. Good or bad, that’s just the way it is. I’d prefer good.

2. Always be there. Quality time doesn’t happen without quantity time. Hang out together for no other reason than just to be in each other’s presence. Be genuinely interested in the things that interest her. She needs her dad to be involved in her life at every stage. Don’t just sit idly by while she add years to her… add life to her years.

3. Save the day. She’ll grow up looking for a hero. It might as well be you. She’ll need you to come through for her over and over again throughout her life. Rise to the occasion. Red cape and blue tights optional.

4. Savor every moment you have together. Today she’s crawling around the house in diapers, tomorrow you’re handing her the keys to the car, and before you know it, you’re walking her down the aisle. Some day soon, hanging out with her old man won’t be the bees knees anymore. Life happens pretty fast. You better cherish it while you can.

5. Pray for her. Regularly. Passionately. Continually.

6. Buy her a glove and teach her to throw a baseball. Make her proud to throw like a girl… a girl with a wicked slider.

7. She will fight with her mother. Choose sides wisely.

8. Go ahead. Buy her those pearls.

9. Of course you look silly playing peek-a-boo. You should play anyway.

10. Enjoy the wonder of bath time.

11. There will come a day when she asks for a puppy. Don’t over think it. At least one time in her life, just say, “Yes.”

12. It’s never too early to start teaching her about money. She will still probably suck you dry as a teenager… and on her wedding day.

13. Make pancakes in the shape of her age for breakfast on her birthday. In a pinch, donuts with pink sprinkles and a candle will suffice.

14. Buy her a pair of Chucks as soon as she starts walking. She won’t always want to wear matching shoes with her old man.

Photo Credit :: Danielle Rocke Toews
15. Dance with her. Start when she’s a little girl or even when she’s a baby. Don’t wait ‘til her wedding day.

16. Take her fishing. She will probably squirm more than the worm on your hook. That’s OK.

17. Learn to say no. She may pitch a fit today, but someday you’ll both be glad you stuck to your guns.

18. Tell her she’s beautiful. Say it over and over again. Someday an animated movie or “beauty” magazine will try to convince her otherwise.

19. Teach her to change a flat. A tire without air need not be a major panic inducing event in her life. She’ll still call you crying the first time it happens.

20. Take her camping. Immerse her in the great outdoors. Watch her eyes fill with wonder the first time she sees the beauty of wide open spaces. Leave the iPod at home.

21. Let her hold the wheel. She will always remember when daddy let her drive.

22. She’s as smart as any boy. Make sure she knows that.

23. When she learns to give kisses, she will want to plant them all over your face. Encourage this practice.

24. Knowing how to eat sunflower seeds correctly will not help her get into a good college. Teach her anyway.

25. Letting her ride on your shoulders is pure magic. Do it now while you have a strong back and she’s still tiny.

26. It is in her nature to make music. It’s up to you to introduce her to the joy of socks on a wooden floor.

27. If there’s a splash park near your home, take her there often. She will be drawn to the water like a duck to a puddle.

28. She will eagerly await your return home from work in the evenings. Don’t be late.

29. If her mom enrolls her in swim lessons, make sure you get in the pool too. Don’t be intimidated if there are no other dads there. It’s their loss.

30. Never miss her birthday. In ten years she won’t remember the present you gave her. She will remember if you weren’t there.

31. Teach her to roller skate. Watch her confidence soar.

32. Let her roll around in the grass. It’s good for her soul. It’s not bad for yours either.

33. Take her swimsuit shopping. Don’t be afraid to veto some of her choices, but resist the urge to buy her full-body beach pajamas.

34. Somewhere between the time she turns three and her sixth birthday, the odds are good that she will ask you to marry her. Let her down gently.

35. She’ll probably want to crawl in bed with you after a nightmare. This is a good thing.

36. Few things in life are more comforting to a crying little girl than her father’s hand. Never forget this.

37. Introduce her to the swings at your local park. She’ll squeal for you to push her higher and faster. Her definition of “higher and faster” is probably not the same as yours. Keep that in mind.

38. When she’s a bit older, your definition of higher and faster will be a lot closer to hers. When that day comes, go ahead… give it all you’ve got.

39. Holding her upside down by the legs while she giggles and screams uncontrollably is great for your biceps. WARNING: She has no concept of muscle fatigue.

40. She might ask you to buy her a pony on her birthday. Unless you live on a farm, do not buy her a pony on her birthday. It’s OK to rent one though.

41. Take it easy on the presents for her birthday and Christmas. Instead, give her the gift of experiences you can share together.

42. Let her know she can always come home. No matter what.

43. Remember, just like a butterfly, she too will spread her wings and fly some day. Enjoy her caterpillar years.

44. Write her a handwritten letter every year on her birthday. Give them to her when she goes off to college, becomes a mother herself, or when you think she needs them most.

45. Learn to trust her. Gradually give her more freedom as she gets older. She will rise to the expectations you set for her.

46. When in doubt, trust your heart. She already does.

47. When your teenage daughter is upset, learning when to engage and when to back off will add years to YOUR life. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.

48. Ice cream covers over a multitude of sins. Know her favorite flavor.

49. This day is coming soon. There’s nothing you can do to be ready for it. The sooner you accept this fact, the easier it will be.

50. Today she’s walking down the driveway to get on the school bus. Tomorrow she’s going off to college. Don’t blink. 

Photo Credits can be found at the bottom of Michael’s original post.

Thursday, November 3, 2011


Hello People of the Interwebs,

I'm going to again try to keep this updated. Life and work gets in the way... BIG TIME!!! But the goal of this blog was to chronicle my little girls life, and chronicle I will!

WARNING: There could potentially be 1,000,000 pictures in this post as we decided to take 20,000,000 pictures in December. It took a while to wade through them all to keep the good ones and trash the bad/blurry/ugly ones. I've posted some keepers throughout this post for your eyejoyment! (see what I did there? I took eye and enjoyment and mashed them together to form a new more awesome word... eyejoyment. It will hit your local Merian-Webster in late 2014.)

It turns out that I was able to narrow down the pics quite a bit... I take a lot of "burst" shots so I am ensured to get at least 1 good shot. I'll try to narrate these shots as we go... unfortunately for you... (and me kinda) it has been nearly a year since these pics were taken, so i'll have to "wing it"... I'm a Byrd so that shouldn't be too hard, right?!?! I know, I know... I'm hysterical.

This set is just of her eating... we took a lot of "her eating" pics in the beginning. Everything was new and magical, even just eating...

We STILL take pictures when she ends up like this!!! The "peas" are hard to make out at first, but look closely... around her chest dimple, matted hair, and the general area of her entire body... you can start to see why we had to capture this before dunking her in the sink for a good soak. The second pic in this one is AFTER bathtime... so freakin' cute!

In these next few we are at G-Ma and G-Pa's house in Oklahoma... Their sink is much deeper than ours... she pretty much fits in it perfectly! Looking back, its hard to believe she was ever that small...

Here we have "The Cousins R"... Rylie and Riya! This was one of the first times they were together (at least when they weren't just sleeping newborns) Riya is 6 weeks younger than Rylie. I think they'll grow up to be great cousins...

Family Christmas at G-Ma and G-Pa's house! I think this is the first time Rylie "read" a book... she absolutely loves to have books read to her! It's pretty neat...

 Snuggling with G-Ma... and Kaele the dog!
 Now for Christmas morning at home... so many pictures of her "opening" her presents... waaaaaay too many in fact. My faves are below... I especially like the giant "Nemo"... Daddy might have picked that one out for her.

Opening presents is EXHAUSTING! She just couldn't stay awake... So funny...

Next up: January 2010


Friday, June 17, 2011

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Public Service Announcement:

We interrupt this "catching up on the past 6 months of Rylie's life" for a brief time travel to the immediate present in order to bring you this special piece of information (in the form of this awesome video!)


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

And now for a little something extra...

This is a clip that we took in late November... just a little early speaking from the super smart baby, Rylie!

Also, don't forget that I do have a YouTube Channel that you are more than welcome to subscribe to... As well as the standard RSS feed to this blog. The YouTube Channel will most likely feature things that I will eventually post here anyway, but you may get to see the clips a bit sooner if you subscribe there too!

Thanks for reading...

Monday, March 28, 2011

The Great Apology... Part 1 of 5??? November

Allow this to signify the official rebirth of "The First Byrd Baby"... the site dedicated (at least mostly) to my daughter Rylie! Hopefully I can aptly show my deepest sorrow for not updating here since mid/late October... which I know is unconscionable...

Here is how I would like to do this. I'll start in November and move toward the present (as in "today" not as in "the gift"... use context clues... come on!)

I will make 2 and only 2 excuses, and they are:

  1. Work was kinda hell on wheels... long hours zapped my creativity for a long long time... any that I had was hoisted toward my daughter and loving wife... So, now that worked has slowed down a tad, I can allocate more of this "so-called creativity" to you, the readers.
  2. Oh, yeah, THE BABY!!!

But you know what they say:
"Excuses are like bungholes, everyone has one and they all stink!"

So without further ado about explaining why I haven't posted in "umpteen months"... Here we go!

First, I'd like to show you a series of pictures I took that exemplify her progress during the month. We have these hanging on our wall, as well. Btw, our house is a veritable shrine to Rylie... sorry, we can't help it!

We were learning to sit up... but in this case, it didn't work so well. When we fall it makes us have this face:

Another first in Movember (November is the month for supporting Prostate Cancer Awareness... Check the link to find out more) was the beginning of "feeding freedom" for mom and dad! Rylie began to hold her own bottles... It wasn't for the whole time yet, but it started the wheels of self-feeding time turning. Pretty cool!

There were also some "Moments of Random Adorableness". See below:

SEE... Freakin' cute, huh?

This was also Rylie's first Thanksgiving... so, of course, as with every holiday (you'll see soon enough) we dressed her up in Turkey garb.

I hope you will all accept my sincerest apology and look forward to reading more about my beautiful daughter in the near future.

Next up: DECEMBER!

I also want to give a "shout out" to my good friend Mike (or as I always seem to call him Michael) who placed a link on his blog, MUSCB, to mine... so I thought I would return the favor. He is currently unemployed, hence the name of his blog Mike's Unemployed Sad Cry Blog (you have to really follow the blog to understand the full meaning of the MUSCB acronym)... If you know anyone that might help him find gainful employment, send me an email.

- DC&R