Submitted by Danny G., Seattle, WA
Binkies don’t always work. So what else could a Dad do to keep the little ones interested and relaxed? Though we might not share it over beers at a ball game, we all do it. Men used to do it in the shower or in the car, while Dads do it just about anywhere. Dads love to entertain their kids. Why? Because they are entertained by us. Singing is just one way to do it.
Babies and kids are an audience that is constantly interested in what we are doing. Usually this manifests in more of a reality show fashion. For example, if all I do is walk to the kitchen I know that there are at least two pairs of eyes watching (my wife has seen it and is unimpressed.)
When I’m watching the twins by myself they sometimes get bored. When this happens I know that I have to step its up a notch (they don’t know how bad my dancing is – I like to think they are laughing with me).
From when my girls were about 2 months old I’ve been singing to them fairly consistently to help calm them when they’re upset. By pure coincidence I was singing one song more than the others (because I can remember the words to this one without sleep!) and eventually the babies got conditioned to it. Now (four months later) they can be in a full I-will-wail-until-I-get-what-I-want-or-your-ears-bleed fit, but when I begin to sing “You are my Sunshine” they stop and smile every time. Mix that in with a few well placed funny faces, maybe a couple of peek-a-boos and voila! I’ve just bought myself a couple of minutes to go pee.
You don’t have to be on American Idol to get your babies to enjoy your singing. Just pick a few songs and maybe one go-to song. If you are consistent in your approach you can get your kids conditioned too. You might not sing like Michael Buble (I know I don’t), but to your babies your voice is gold.