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CDN Spotlight: Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) Unveils Blog

Ben Franklin has been quoted as having said, “In the world, nothing can be said to be certain except death and taxes.” While I don’t want to be the one to disagree with the great Mr. Franklin, I do have one more thing to add to his list of certainties.

That addition would be the certainty that you can trust the caring people at Ottawa’s, Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, to take the best possible care of your children while they are there. I speak from personal experience, not only as a father but also as a former patient. The people at CHEO have never been anything but extraordinary each and every time I have had to take my little one’s in there.

Both my children screened for Biotinidase Defficiency at birth, so my wife and I have spent many hours in the Genetics department at CHEO, worrying about the effects it will have on our children. It takes a special kind of person to work in a children’s hospital and it’s evident from our time spent there that all the staff at CHEO have that special something to make parents and children feel at ease.

I’ve been starting to realize lately, that people are actually listening to the things I have say. With this realization came an opportunity to use that voice to do some good and that’s fully what I intend on doing. When I contacted CHEO a month ago to see if I could help out in any way, I was excited to hear that they were starting a blog. I mean, what better way to help that to do for them what I have already been doing for the past 7 months!

They even let me help out with the design of the site by running ideas by me and actually listening to my input, which was a surreal time for me. You’ll see the results of my efforts throughout the site and also on the main banner, as what started as CHEO Moms has now become something that all parents (Dads included) can be proud to be a part of. There are even 3 Dads on the Featured Bloggers list, which is amazing!

Without any further ado, I am proud to present to you, my first post as a member of the CHEO parenting blogger team! I wrote about my CHEO experience as a father and hope you’ll stop by to say hi.

I hope you’ll bookmark CHEO’s new blog as has some amazing writers working on it and promises to be an invaluable resource for parents. I’m so proud to be a part of the CHEO team and can’t wait to read more from everybody involved!

You can access the blog by visiting CheoMoms.com OR CheoDads.com ;D You can also connect with CHEO on Twitter @CheoHospital and on the Main CHEO site.

Cheers!

Dad Blogs Exposed! – Dadditudes

 

 

 

 

After a one week vacation, Dad Blogs Exposed is back and better than ever! This week I’ll be featuring a new site for Dad’s that’s taking Canada by Storm.

That site is called Dadditudes and it is the brainchild of Neil Hedley, who I was e-introduced to through a mutual friend. I couldn’t figure out how to accurately describe Neil’s profession, so I’ll copy and paste from his bio and you’ll see why…

“Along the way, Neil’s been an actor, singer, stand-up comic, author of a book that hit #1 in its category on Amazon, World Record holder, and in 2011, was one of the first five speakers announced at Canada’s first-ever 140 Conference.”

How do you narrow that down to one? Oh yeah, he also contributes weekly to Sympatico.ca and also does a weekly feature on CTV here in Canada. On top of all that, he’s actually a really nice guy, not like those other hot head World Record holders! How he had time to come up with Dadditudes is beyond me but it’s quickly becoming one of my favourite hangout spots on the net.

Fittingly enough, Dadditudes was launched on Fathers’ Day 2012 as a magazine, community and resource for men who have better things to think about than the latest raunchy photos of actresses on the beach.

That tag line caught my eye right away and after checking out the site for a couple months, I can say that they totally live up to their word. It’s your one stop shop for everything from movie and music reviews to fatherly issues. Throw in some sports, cars and television talk and they’ve got all the makings of a successful site for men.

With a full staff of 21 writers and counting, you’ll never be lacking for material with Dadditudes. The more I read it, the more it starts to feel like one of my favourite sites, the Yummy Mummy Club, but for men. Much like the YMC however, there is more than enough content for both sexes to enjoy.

I hope you’ll take a few minutes (or hours (or days)) to check out Dadditudes and everything it has to offer. Neil has created the beginning of something very cool here and it’s definitely worth your time! You can also follow them on their Facebook page or head on over and say Hi to both Dadditudes and Neil Hedley on Twitter.

Cheers!!

My @AdultEssentials Vitamin Challenge Wrap Up! Gummies Anyone?

For the past 2 months, I’ve been taking part in the Adult Essentials Men’s Blog Tour! I have to say, I was a little skeptical about the whole thing because I’ve never really been a vitamin kind of guy. In my original post, I had narrowed it down to poor taste, enormous size or laziness; and while I’d like to say it was a combination of the three, it was definitely laziness.

How am I supposed to remember to take a vitamin every single day when I can barely remember to put the same colour socks on before I leave the house for work!? I can’t lie to you all, it was tough remembering at first. Fortunately, after about a week or two I got into a rhythm and never missed a day from that point on. Here’s where my inner child kicks in. Had the vitamins not been in gummy form, I can assure you that I would have stopped taking them, just like every other time I’ve tried to start a vitamin routine. I know, it felt ridiculous even typing that but I absolutely can not stand chewing on chalky vitamins.

Ok, back to my adult side, I have been a shift worker for the past 3 years. I work a horrible 12 hour shift on a 24/7 rotation which makes sleep and nutrition almost impossible. Anyone who has ever sat in a giant office complex alone at 2am, with a stocked room full of chips, chocolate bars, pop and all kinds of other junk will understand what I’m talking about. It’s difficult to stay on top of things when you can’t control your instincts because of exhaustion.

Well, I’m happy to report that after 2 months of taking the Adult Essentials vitamins, my sleeping has improved dramatically! Given, the vitamins can’t make my kids sleep through the night (Ahem, Deb, please work on this) but my problem was always in the getting to sleep part and that has been a breeze lately.

The other thing I have noticed is that my energy levels have been much higher in the last few weeks. I can’t give the vitamins full credit because I implemented an exercise routine at the same time as I started taking them; but it was due to the challenge that I started exercising, so that should bring it full circle in crediting Adult Essentials for the motivation. I’ve been able to stay awake and alert longer since I’ve begun with the vitamin/exercise combo and my kids and I are the ones reaping the benefits of a more active Daddy!

Look At These Before & After Photos! What An Amazing Transformation!

I think it’s also important to note that I am no vitamin expert and had to do some research on the effects of each type of vitamin I was going to take before doing it. I would suggest you do the same or even talk to your doctor before starting a new regimen. I found the Adult Essentials Nutritional Info page to be very helpful in educating me on what each vitamin is responsible for doing.

In closing, I wanted to take a minute to say Thank You to Deb and Stu Lowther, who are the masterminds behind Adult Essentials and also IronKids Gummies. My dealings with them have been nothing but pleasant and I love following and interacting with them on their social media accounts. They are one of the few companies who understand that the best way to reach your target audience, is to treat them as you would like to be treated and it’s no wonder why they are so respected within the blogging community.

It’s been a blast to have been a part of the Adult Essentials Men’s Blog Tour and I’m pleased to report that they have a new customer and friend in me. If you haven’t done so already, I encourage you to go check out Adult Essentials on Twitter and Facebook. Think I’m just kissing up to them? Go ahead and start up a conversation with them and you’ll see what I’m talking about!

Well, what are you waiting for? Get out and at least try the vitamins! They’re Gummies that are good for you, People!

Cheers!

I am participating in the Adult Essentials Men’s Blog Tour. I received a supply of vitamins in exchange for my participation in this campaign. Opinions expressed belong to me and are NOT influenced in any way.

The Best Blogging Advice I Ever Received

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s hard to believe that it has been 7 months already since I started Canadian Dad. Truthfully, had this domain name not been available, I probably wouldn’t have started it at all. I’m glad it was!

There’s been tremendous up’s and down’s so far and I’ve learned a lot about the world of blogging. Everyone has different opinions on what is acceptable and what is not, some with stronger opinions than others but that comes with the territory. I agree that there are things I see that are off putting but I also understand that as long as you are not breaking the law, it’s your space to do as you see fit with it.

With all the “rules” that float around the blogosphere, there is one piece of advice I have received from two different people now, that has stuck with me. I was lucky enough to latch myself on to an amazing group of Canadian bloggers, where I had the chance to meet Shannon Mischuk of Shasher’s Life fame. I was a little lost about the whole blogging thing, especially with the unwritten rules, when Shannon summed up all I needed to know in two words.

Be Kind

It couldn’t be that easy, could it? What about the content? The review/giveaway debates? The Drama! There had to be more to it than that! People don’t want kindness, they want shock and awe! I’ve found over the past few months that there is a market for all types of personalities in the blogging world and have been working hard to try and carve my niche. I have also been using the advice Shannon gave me as the bar for all my interactions.

Flash Forward to a couple weeks ago and I had the opportunity to go spend a day with Ford Canada. More importantly, I got a chance to meet some of the most influential bloggers in Ottawa. Included in that group was Shannon McKarney, who wears many hats but who I associate with her home blog of Zchamu Dot Com.

Not that I had any preconceived notions of how the other bloggers would treat me but I just assumed as the newbie and only male, that I would have a hard time forcing myself into conversations. These were people who had been around the scene for awhile and most likely didn’t have time to coach a rookie. Well, I could not have been more wrong! Not only were they welcoming but they were very willing to dole out advice from their years of blogging. Shannon said something to me towards the end of the evening that I had previously heard somewhere else.

“The best advice I can give you, is to Be Kind.”

There it was again! I don’t know about you but when two influential people say the exact same thing, I listen. Not that I wasn’t already trying to be my jovial self in my interactions with people but it was definitely reaffirming to hear it from the people I looked up to.

It can be an intimidating experience to put yourself out there to be judged by your peers but I’ve found that the advice I received from the two Shannon’s has been invaluable in connecting with other bloggers and also with brands. Now that I’ve been on the scene for a bit, I’m really noticing that this one trait is actually more valuable than having perfect numbers and endless followers. It sounds fun to be able to sit at the top of the mountain but not if you have to sit there alone and disliked.

All that said, I’d like to thank not only Shannon & Shannon (Not an official Law Firm) for the great advice, but I’d like to thank everyone in the blogging community for being so welcoming and open to sharing their wisdom with me. It has been an amazing experience so far and I’ve only just begun!

I’ve now come to my chance to Pay It Forward in a way. I don’t know if anyone really reads my blog but if you are reading this right now and you are looking for some guidance, the best advice I can offer you is also the best advice I have ever received…

Be Kind.

Cheers!