So your loved ones were torn on what to give you for Christmas. Should they get you something particularly masculine but doomed to collect dust on the shelves or should they risk emasculating you by giving you something you might actually use on a day to day basis, like cookbooks, or days-of-the-week pajamas, or earplugs (props to those who gave me beer for Christmas.) Most people will avoid any chance of insulting us stay-at-home dads so many of us find ourselves with gifts we won’t be able to use until our children give us a moment’s peace. I’m here to help you find uses for your man-gifts.
Tool Belt – The best SAHD man-gift possible. This gem can be used for dads with babies (bottle, pacifier, wipes, diapers, burp cloth, rattle, air freshener, tongs) or older kids (crayons, boxes of raisins, first aid kit, change of underwear, baggie of legos, sunscreen, juice cup.)
Chainsaw – Since it is used outside, the chainsaw carries the added bonus in that your neighbors will think you actually get manly work done outside, when in fact you are probably carving your way through your kids’ most annoying toys. Baby’s First High Pitched Scream Bot? History. Speak and Spell and Whistle and Chirp and Beep and Flash and Cause Seizures? Slag.
Fishing Pole – An idea from the St. Louis Magic House: Attach a magnet to the end of your fishing line and place small metallic objects in your back yard for you and your child to cast to and “catch.”
DeWalt Heavy-Duty 12 Inch Double-Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw – Who are you kidding? You don’t even know what this is.
Golf Clubs – 3 words: Dog poop relocation.
Plasma Television – Unless you want your toddler to use his new hammer on it or your teenager (or you?) to risk losing her grip on her Wii-mote you better keep this in its box or just return it altogether.
Random gadgets – Kids are easily hypnotized by anything small, flashy, and beepy. Keep your new random gadget (I got an idog) handy for when one of them is acting up in a public place. Turn it on, show the child, and back slowly to where you want the child to go. He or she would follow the gadget off a cliff.
Home Depot Gift Card – This is a tough one because you will be tempted not to insult and emasculate yourself, and probably walk away with the Home Depot equivalent of racing stripes on a car, cool and manly but ultimately useless. Some useful purchases for us SAHDs range from sand for the kids’ sandbox to materials for a new toy chest.