A Stay at Home Dad - Keeping It Real
Stay-at-home dad Grant Angus talks about keeping it real with baby Geva. She's a hard road - finding the perfect playgroup when you're a bloke with a baby.
Grant Angus, father of one-year-old Geva, took the year off when his baby girl was born. He and his wife Ngaire, a bank manager, crunched the numbers and, without much difficulty, worked out that Ngaire would bring home a larger salary than Grant on his teacher's pay.
And Grant has loved it.
He plays with Geva throughout the day, often lots of rough and tumble games that she loves. For a long time they had a weekly date at the local pool and Grant, a high school PE teacher, would encourage Geva to roll and put her head under the water.
But as far as getting out to meet others goes, Grant likes to keep his options open.
The idea of going to a coffee group where mums are talking about breastfeeding and other female-only topics put him off. So he and Geva started keeping a regular appointment with another father-child combo at the pool. Lately, they've been enjoying Stay & Play at the Living and Learning Family Centre in west Auckland.
"It's still important for Geva to have social contact so that's why I take her out," says Grant.
But there's one thing Grant doesn't do - he doesn't sweat the small stuff. And that's something he thinks mums at home would do well to try. Grant makes sure Geva has been fed, had her nappy changed and a good sleep and then it's play time!
He doesn't want her wrapped in cotton wool - he wants her to be able to explore and learn, and maybe have the odd accident. "It's all about learning self-awareness," he explains.
As the family's "domestic manager", he's also on top of the cooking and cleaning, vacuuming every second day since Geva started crawling and making a good start on the washing.
"I get it done but I wouldn't get it done as well as my wife would want it. I'm not that good at taking good care of Ngaire's work clothes in the wash," he admits.
"Earlier on, her expectations were way up there but it's a matter of coming to some sort of compromise."The first priority is Geva - I make sure she's having a good time."
Next year, Grant goes back to work at an Auckland high school and Geva will go into daycare. It'll be a wrench when it happens but Grant's looking forward to getting out of school and picking up Geva around 4.30pm so he can have quality time before dinner.
And further down the track, Ngaire hopes to take a year off when baby number two comes along.
AS FEATURED IN ISSUE 20 OF OHbaby! MAGAZINE. CHECK OUT OTHER ARTICLES IN THIS ISSUE BELOW