1. Routines are good. Ours includes a daily, post-breakfast dance session. There’s nobody else around except you and the baby, so own it and be ridiculous.
2. Beatboxing. It stops her crying every time. That and 89.9 all classical FM radio with our favorite host, Christa Wessel.
3. Drop in baby/toddler gyms (like the one at Peninsula Park). An entire baby-proofed gymnasium of padded mats, balls, and tunnels? It’s a wonderland for her and my chance to lie on the floor for only a buck. We’re there every day.
4. Lay off Instagram. As much as I want to document every cute thing she does, the moments I’ll never forget are the ones where my phone is in the bottom of the diaper bag.
5. Be patient. Some days it can feel isolating when most of the other stay-at-home parents you see are white women. But eventually you’ll find other parents you relate to.
6. Stretch. I make a point to stretch whenever I’m on the floor playing with her. Gotta stay limber to keep up as she figures out this world.
This issue’s cover parent is Vin Shambry, a native Portlander, actor, and stay-at-home dad whose wife teaches full-time. A Broadway performer, he can also be seen on Portland stages as a resident artist at Artist Repertory Theater.
Harlowe Rose is a vibrant 13-month-old who likes spanikopita, beans, and dancing. She also loves to kiss any baby in sight.