Traits of a True Father – Cladwell

Thank you so much to my friends over at Cladwell for the opportunity to write for you! My latest article “Traits of a True Father” can be seen in it’s entirety here

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Breathe Easy Dads, Cladwell Makes Shopping Easy For Men

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by: Eric Sztanyo

Have you ever been frustrated by the shopping experience? You make a significant investment in time and money to get to the mall, wade through the thousands of options and try on clothes in those dingy, dark dressing rooms.  If you’re lucky, you may walk away with something you like, but at what cost?

We know shopping can be a hassle for men, and Dads have less time than they used to. We exist to create a better way.

Men live in a world right now where looking good matters. And if you don’t have the expertise of the fashion world, it can be intimidating and confusing to try to dress well. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a guide to help you sort through this world? That’s where we come in.

Cladwell is a free, online personal stylist for men. Men take an easy survey and tell us about their style preferences, body type (build and coloring) and budget, and we provide instant custom recommendations from expert stylists.

We find the best clothes for you to be ready for anything. We empower men with the right tools to feel confident with their clothes.

And, it’s all free. The recommendations are free, and we never mark up the clothes. In fact, we help you find items on sale. Get unlimited recommendations and have fun exploring different looks. Or, get in and get out with your life, knowing you are buying clothes that are right for your body type, coloring and style.

We curate clothing items from literally thousands of brands, and we offer unbiased recommendations from each. So, you’re not getting boxed into only a handful of brands.

We also don’t believe in perpetual shopping. We want to help guys see a finish line for their wardrobe. We think this is better for the guy, for the environment and the world.

That’s why we are creating the Minimal Wardrobe checklist. In the near future, we’ll be rolling out an update on our site that creates an entire map for a man’s wardrobe. You tell us what you need to wear and how often, and we’ll give you the list of everything you need to own. Once you check off your list, your done. Shopping over. Life on.

With the Minimal Wardrobe feature will include custom recommendations and outfit ideas. It will update seasonally with new trends.

Never going to the mall? Check. Finding the right clothes for you? Check. Being able to explore new and unique brands? Check. Creating a roadmap for your wardrobe of everything from Black Tie to Fourth of July? Check.

We’re Cladwell, and we’ve got your back. We believe all men matter and clothes are not something men should be worried about. We want to free men from any fear or anxiety of their wardrobe and empower them to feel confident with their look. We want to give men that “favorite shirt feeling” for every item of clothing in their closet.

It’s a customized shopping experience so you never have to worry about clothes shopping again. Now, you’re free to live life, and look great while doing it.

Try it today for free, and find your new favorite shirt in less than 2 minutes.

 

About the Author:

Eric is a husband of 1 and father of 2, who is passionate about family, fatherhood, baseball and bourbon. 

He is President of his own Inbound Marketing firm and has launched three E-commerce stores.  He presently works with Cladwell as their CMO, and is having a blast helping men look good and feel awesome.

Find out more about Eric and Circle him here.

Week 29, and the Nursery is Taking Shape

Sometimes during the course of a pregnancy, it can feel like there isn’t much for the man to do. We did our job, and then it become’s the woman’s burden to grow and nourish your baby while you sit on the sideline, twiddling your thumbs and trying to be active and supportive and helpful to your ever-more uncomfortable partner.

But this, this is something I’ve been so excited to do, because it feels like I get to contribute and really, tangibly do something for my daughter. My wife and I came up with the idea of a woodland creature themed room, and she encouraged me to paint a mural on one of the walls. I’ll be honest, I was definitely a bit nervous before starting the project. If I were to tackle something of this nature for my daughter, I would want it to be perfect. But, my wife is awesome, and she told me she had faith in me. So, I decided to go for it.

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Would ya look at that? It looks like a tree. And not even a bad tree, but a pretty good one, too. It’s just the start, and there’s plenty of cleaning up to do with it, adding in a couple more branches and some woodland creatures, but so far, I’d say it’s looking pretty dang good. I’ll keep you updated as it continues to improve.

I love being able to do this for my daughter. It’s special to me, being able to give her this. To be able to create something especially for her and do what I can to make her happy and comfortable is something very near and dear to me, and something that I take a great deal of pride in.

I hope my little girl likes it. I hope it makes her happy. I hope someday she sees that, since before she was even born, all I wanted was to do what I could to make her happy.

5 Things to Never Say to a Pregnant Woman

My beautiful and no-doubt-about-it-pregnant wife is 28 weeks along now, and she looks absolutely incredible. I adore her pregnancy waddle, I love when she rubs her belly subconsciously, and she really is absolutely glowing. Pregnancy looks great on her.

With that said, some people just don’t think before they speak. I’m sure their little comments are well-intentioned, but they really aren’t helping anyone. Instead of calling my wife cute, you basically made her feel huge. So thanks for that.

So, without further adieu, here are 5 things to NEVER say to a pregnant woman.

1) Wow! You look like you’re about ready to pop!” Oh really, sir? She does? She still has 12 weeks to go, she looks wonderful, and all you accomplished was making her feel huge. So shut up. Please.

2) “Are you sure there aren’t twins in there?!” Nope, just one. Promise. And by the way, you’re absolutely hilarious. In your head I’m sure you saw that joke going marvelously, but it didn’t. It doesn’t. And it never will.

3) “Should you be eating that?” Danger. Ohhh danger. Unless you want a fork to be thrust into your eyeball, I highly suggest you make exactly zero comments about what a pregnant woman eats. I don’t care if she is knee deep in a kiddy pool of chocolate, let her do whatever she wants. And, call this tip 3.1 – when she declines to eat something because modern medicine has determined it’s probably better that she doesn’t, don’t try saying “OH IT’LL BE FINE! Back in my day we used to…” Just stop it. Medicine has progressed significantly and new information shows that certain things aren’t stellar for the baby. So stop.

4) “My parenting style is the best and here’s why…” Listen up hot shot, nobody is a perfect parent. Do my wife and I know what we’re doing in the parenting department? Absolutely not. Are we going to have some rude awakenings, both literally and figuratively? Without a question. It’s a learning process, one that we are going to have to go through, but one thing is absolutely unequivocally without question, and that is the fact that our little daughter will be tremendously loved. Unless we asked for your input, please, keep your mouth shut. I don’t want or need to hear about why your baby yoga 10 times a week makes you a better parent than someone else.

5) “Are you going back to work after the baby comes?” This question is so absurdly loaded, it’s ridiculous. I know that it seems perfectly harmless on the surface, but what this question can imply, depending on who’s asking, is a sense of judgment. Either you’re a terrible mom for wanting to leave your baby and go back to work or you’re “outdated and old fashioned” for wanting to stay home. Sure, the question might be harmless and the conversation might be smooth and a-okay, but if you ask that question and follow up with any sort of judgement whatsoever, you could cause quite a bit of damage.

So, long story short, just don’t with these questions or comments. They’re typically loaded or full of ignorance, and don’t really accomplish much more than added stress and frustration to a woman already doing the hardest job out there – pregnancy.

When Tragedy Strikes, How Will I Handle It?

When tragedy happens, I fear for the world my daughter will be coming into. Today there was a stabbing at a Pittsburgh area high school where a 16 year old boy decided to go on a stabbing spree, injuring 20 people. Thankfully, everyone is expected to survive, but the dangers and evils in this world instill an uncertainty in me.

What could drive a 16 year old to do something so awful? So harmful? How will I explain these situations to my daughter? Situations that involve a school incident terrify me, because it makes it painfully obvious that I won’t always be able to protect my child. I can’t control what other people do. I can’t stand in front of her 24 hours a day and shield her from what’s coming. I just have to trust and pray that my daughter is safe when I can’t be there. Letting go of that will be brutally challenging at times.

What if it happened at my daughter’s school? What if my daughter was involved? How could I get to her in this situation?

The thoughts can be paralyzing. Reading this article on CNN.com about the incident, it grieves me for the parents that were told not to come to the school and to wait until they heard. Sitting, helplessly waiting, would be unbearably painful.

So, I pray. I pray for strength and wisdom for how to explain tragedy to my daughter if and when it happens. I pray for my daughter’s safety, because I won’t always be able to be there. I pray that when my daughter faces tragedy, she will find comfort in God. And right now, I pray for all those affected by this devastating situation in Pittsburgh.

The Looming Spectre of Kindergarten

I want to share with you all a really well written and beautiful post. Take a couple minutes to read it, and give this guy a follow! I thoroughly enjoy his blog.

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Not all that long ago, The Narrator openly and verbally rebelled against the idea of going to school. We would mention pre-school and he would have a conniption. This worried us a little bit, since he had grown up virtually by himself. Sure, there were playgroups, and story time at the library, but most of his days were spent with mommy. We were terrified that he was becoming maladjusted and antisocial. He took the “Don’t talk to strangers” thing so seriously, that added to the list of people he shouldn’t talk to were family and friends as well.

The kid would take 20 minutes to warm up to his own grandparents some times. About the instant we worried that we were in trouble with him- he flicked a switch.

“Mommy, I think I’m ready for school.”

Just like that. Four years old and ready to make his way. This was…

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