All posts tagged: baby gear

Chapter 4: Who’s Carolina Herrera?

So I called Ben Liberty. A brief phone conversation revealed a super friendly man who seemed far-from-pretentious when he listed the companies for whom he creates samples: Gucci, Coach, J.Crew. Once again, I was talking to a behind-the-scenes fashion mover-and-shaker who voiced full enthusiasm for my project. Spoiler alert: throughout the entirety of my research and building this company, everyone everyone EVERYONE has been nothing but helpful and enthusiastic. I expected Project Runway attitude and fashion snobbery. Nothing could be further from the truth. (Well, actually, Howard with the Italian fabrics was condescending and unimpressed, but then again, I didn’t actually tell him what I was making.) So, in person, Ben ended up being a blue-collar Bostonian with a fantastic small factory on the far Lower East Side of Manhattan. “I used to be one of hundreds. But 9/11 destroyed our business. No one could get to us. Everything south of Chambers was closed off for months. We couldn’t do business. That’s why I’m the only one left.” His factory was about 1,000 square feet …

Chapter 2 – Starting the Path

So I called a good friend, (also an actor), who had some experience in design, James Brown. I asked him, “I have a random idea for a design I’d like to ask you about. Can you meet me at the playground where I bring my kids?” A few days later we met at a playground, aka my office. “What do you think of making a stylish diaper bag for dads?” He didn’t guffaw in my face. Phew. First step down. Right away, James put together some inspiring ideas and notions of other bags. A week later, we met up at a coffee shop (so we’d have a table for sketching) and laid out a basic idea of a messenger bag. I mentioned, “I’d like the bag to be deep navy blue. Like Louis Vuitton material, but blue.” Armed with a design, I first reached out to a friend, Mike Lubin, whom I like to call “the unofficial president of an unofficial gay dads club” with which I’m remotely active. I texted him a pic of …

I was a (Sleep-Deprived) Mother

When Colton was 7 months old, his #tearlesscrying teamed up with three wake-ups at night, making me unrecognizable to myself. At the time, my partner was busy preparing symphonic concerts and was in desperate need of rest. Because I didn’t need to think beyond mere “survival” and hitting my sounds as a tap-dancing Santa Claus in Annie, I felt responsible to get up those three times/night. Mercifully, Colton never stayed awake, he just squawked. I re-plugged him with a pacifier and he went back to sleep. By that seven-month mark in December, I had not slept more than three hours at a time for 9 months. I. DO. NOT. KNOW. HOW. BREAST-FEEDING. MOTHERS. DO. IT. It was the time in my parenting life when I most related to sleep-deprived mothers. Disclaimer: No, I did not carry that child for 9 months. No, I did not push something the size of a melon through a hole the size of a carrot. No, I did not have hormones raging through my body. I did not suffer more …

#tearlesscrying

My second born son, Colton, is a magnificent study in extremes. He is adorable. He could charm the wallpaper off the walls. His seductive grin makes mincemeat of the hardest of child-hating hearts. And at the opposite extreme, what I call: #tearlesscrying. Not tantrums. It’s worse. He whines incessantly. Seriously, y’all. It’s soul-sucking. Believe me, Colton does not lack for coddling. Remember the whole ‘He’s so cute” bit? He’ll snuggle for hours. (Well, 15 minutes). It’s heaven

Everyone is Having More Fun than Me

And by “everyone” I mean parents. Not Ukrainians. Calm down. Most of the last year has seen me as a single father. My partner conducted and directed concerts across the country, and that meant many weekends away. I’ve been stuck, un-showered, with a double-stroller and the stinking feeling that everyone else is having more fun than I am. So I occasionally set myself up for bitter annoyance by trying to create a solo (with kids) “ideal Saturday morning.” Let’s go to Tribeca and

SCREW SUNSETS, I WANT MY IPAD

The other day I read a spot-on post by a mother lamenting the fact that her kids don’t look out at the river when they’re driving. Instead, their faces are buried in touch screens. Screw my kids’ appreciation. What about my burning desire to stare at a touch screen? I stand at the playground and challenge myself to see how long I can hold off checking texts. Sometimes I make it two and a half minutes…if Colton isn’t gleefully stealing toys from younger kids. Once I’ve extracted the phone and glanced at the home page alerts, I might as well swipe, punch my code, and see if emails jumped from 13 to 14. Maybe a life-changing message arrived in the ninety seconds since I slipped the phone into my pocket (to unload the stroller). Yes, I was scrolling HuffPost while pushing the stroller to the playground. I might not have looked up as I crossed streets, dodged an old lady using a walker, and avoided dog poop. Busy bodies might think I never looked up …

6 Do’s and 3 Don’t’s When Expecting

Some very close friends are expecting babies, right now. Here’s some of my uncommon knowledge for them before their lives are wonderfully destroyed by blessed rugrats… 1. DO sit around playing mindless games on your phone and indulging guilty pleasures. You won’t have time for it ever again. Or if you do, it’ll only be for 17 seconds after you lay in bed, flip on your phone, pretend to “catch up”, and immediately fall asleep. 1. DON’T read any “expecting a baby” books. Trendy, “latest research” factoids muddle your brain. Seek advice from friends, and know that your parents’ example (or your friends’ parents’ examples) will be enough to get you through the first few months. 2. DO buy basic baby gear, but limit the rest. The basics: diapers, food, changing pad, swaddling blankets, sound machine, teething “chew toy”, baby swing, car seat, baby carrier (like bjorn, ergo or moby) and a stroller. That’s all you need, especially at the beginning. Babies have spent their first months in baskets, mangers, drawers and padded boxes for …