Car Seat Safety: What to Know Before You Hit the Road by Guest Contributor Samantha Meredith (The Carlson Law Firm)

Advice from The Carlson Law Firm

Traveling with kids can be difficult. Making sure everyone has what they need and gets buckled up properly is a daily struggle for many parents. However, paying special attention to car seat safety is absolutely vital to protect children in the case of a car accident.

What are the Safety Guidelines for Car Seats?

Safety guidelines for children in the car usually specify four different stages. When your child is ready to progress to each stage largely depends on the child’s age, height, and weight. To keep your child as safe as possible in the car, make sure that they are buckled up in whichever seat is appropriate for them.

  1. Rear-facing seat

The first stage of car seat safety is the rear-facing seat. This car seat should always be placed in the back seat of the car, with the infant facing away from the front of the car. The CDC recommends keeping children in rear-facing car seats from birth until they outgrow the height and weight limit of the seat.  

Many car seat safety experts recommend keeping children in rear-facing car seats for as long as possible. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, rear-facing car seats are the safest way for children to ride as long as they fit in the seat properly. This is because the rear-facing seat absorbs most of the force from the crash while providing better support for the head, neck, and spine.

  1. Forward-facing seat

The next stage of car seat safety is the forward-facing car seat. This car seat should also be placed in the back seat of the vehicle; however, with this seat, the child will face the front of the car. The front-facing car seat should have a harness and a top-tether, which will help limit head movement in the event of a crash. 

The CDC recommends that children should stay in forward-facing car seats until at least the age of five. However, it’s best to keep them in a front-facing car seat until they outgrow the seat’s height and weight limits. 

  1. Booster seat

Once a child has outgrown the forward-facing car seat, they should move to booster seats. Booster seats do not have harnesses; rather, they help position the child so that the seat belt fits properly. As with all car seats, booster seats should be placed in the back seat of the vehicle, and the car’s seat belt should be used to secure the child.

The CDC notes that seat belt fit can vary depending on the vehicle,so children may need booster seats in some cars but not in others. In general, though, children should keep using booster seats until theys seat belt fits them properly without a booster seat. Most children will be ready to move out of booster seats between the ages of 9 and 12.

  1. Adult safety belt

The final stage of car seat safety is simply using the seat belt in the car. When the seat belt fits properly across the child’s chest and lap, they can move out of the booster seat. The seat belt fits properly when the lap belt sits across the thighs and the shoulder belt crosses the center of the shoulder and chest. 

Even if the seat belt fits properly, the CDC recommends that children should stay in the back seat of the car until the age of 13. Additionally, every person, child or not, should buckle their seat belt when they get in a vehicle. Countless studies have shown that wearing seat belts reduce injuries and save lives in car crashes, so make sure to buckle up!

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Using a Car Seat

Even when parents have the best of intentions with car seats, there is still room for error. With all the different car seat brands and models, it’s easy to get overwhelmed or confused about installation and proper usage. If you’re a parent, watch out for these common mistakes when using car seats:

Using the wrong seat for age, height, and weight

Make sure that the car seat your child is in fits their age, height, and weight. The car seat should also fit into your vehicle and be easy to install correctly every time. Again, using the right car seat for your child’s age and size will help protect them if you get into a car crash.

Incorrect installation

Make sure to install the car seat correctly according to the directions given with the car seat and your vehicle. This is important because the car seat can’t properly protect your child in a car crash if it’s installed incorrectly.

Buying used car seats

This common mistake seems to be understandable, especially when considering how expensive brand-new car seats are. However, buying a used car seat comes with some risks. First, you don’t know if the car seat has already been through a car crash and sustained damage that is invisible but makes it less safe. Second, car seats can be recalled and often have expiration dates. Essentially, it’s much safer to buy a new car seat.

Chest clips in wrong position

Another common mistake when using car seats is putting the chest clips on the harness in the wrong position. The chest clips should rest across the chest at armpit level, not on the stomach or up by the neck.

Straps too loose

Many parents also make the mistake of not tightening the straps on the harness properly. One test you can do to make sure the straps are tight enough is to try to pinch the straps at the collarbone. If you can pinch them, they are too loose.

When is it Safe to Stop Using Booster Seats?

By the time kids are using booster seats, they’re probably old enough to wish they didn’t have to. They may complain about wanting to ditch the booster seat; however, parents need to (and often do) realize that their child’s safety is more important than their child’s wishes.

As discussed earlier, kids can move out of booster seats when seat belts fit them properly. Seat belts fit properly when the lap belt sits across the thighs, not the stomach, and the shoulder belt sits across the chest instead of riding up to their neck.

If you’re still unsure about whether your child is ready to move out of the booster seat, you can use this test to help:

  • Have your child sit straight up against the back of the vehicle seat, and see if his or her knees bend over the edge. 
  • Check to see if the seat belt stays low and tight across your child’s lap.
  • Look at the shoulder strap of the seat belt. It must lay over the collarbone and shoulder, NOT on the face or neck. 
  • See if your child can maintain the correct position for an extended period of time with the seat belt in its proper place.

If your child can maintain the proper position with the seat belt, they can move out of the booster seat safely.

The Carlson Law Firm Cares

Car seat safety is so important for protecting little ones in the event of a car accident. Even if getting kids in and out of them is a hassle, the effort is definitely worth it in the end! 

However, if despite your best efforts to protect them, you or your kids ever end up injured in a car accident, you can rely on caring and compassionate personal injury lawyers to help. We care, and we can help.

Taking Control of your Wellness (Guest Post from Laura Pearson)

Want to Take Control of Your Wellness? Here Are 5 Tips for Health Advocacy Today

Advocating for your health is one of the most important things you can do. It will help you lead a happier, healthier life, but you’ll also find that your confidence skyrockets as you learn to speak up for yourself. If you’ve been looking to become your very own wellness ambassador, keep reading as Diary of a Gay Dad shares 5 essential tips for doing so today.

1. Stay Informed about Your Health

Read up on health and wellness topics that interest you, and ensure you understand any medical information or instructions from your doctor or health care team. If there’s something you don’t understand, don’t hesitate to ask questions. After all, the more you know about your health, the better equipped you’ll be to make informed decisions about your care.

2. Find the Right Support

A big part of being your health advocate is referring to the right professionals. Taking advantage of free preventative care under the Affordable Care Act is an excellent place to start. You should also find the right healthcare professional for your health goals and needs. LGBTQ+ families often have unique needs in healthcare and advocacy, and finding a professional who respects and supports your wellness will be critical to achieving your health goals. 

3. Take Care of Your Mind and Emotional Wellbeing

Physical health is closely intertwined with mental and emotional health, so taking care of all aspects of ourselves is essential. Make sure to schedule time for activities that make you happy and help you relax, such as spending time with friends and family, reading, listening to music, or getting outside in nature. According to Everyday Health, taking care of your mental health will help you be your best self and better able to advocate for your own physical health.

4. Prioritize Prevention

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, as they say. So, in addition to staying informed and speaking up for yourself, another essential way to be an advocate for your own health is to prioritize prevention. This means making lifestyle choices that will help you stay healthy, such as eating a nutritious diet, regularly exercising, and getting enough sleep. It also means being proactive about your health by getting regular check-ups and screenings and taking steps to prevent injuries and illness, such as wearing a seatbelt and sunscreen.

5. Manage Your Records

Finally, being aware of your rights as a patient is essential. According to HIV Legal Network, this involves knowing your rights to privacy and confidentiality, understanding your right to informed consent, and being aware of your right to access your own medical records. It would help if you also were constantly maintaining your documents. This way, they will be ready for easy access and can be reviewed for errors after a visit or prescription. In addition, saving your health records as a PDF to your iPhone is a great way to access important files and documents on the go. When you do so, you won’t have to rely on WiFi to access your documents – just remember where you saved it, and you’ll be good to go!

Advocating for your health can seem daunting, but it’s important to remember that you have the right to be involved in your own care. By staying informed, speaking up, and taking care of yourself, you can be your best advocate and ensure you get the care and treatment you need.

Baby Proofing Mistakes to Avoid by Guest Contributer Andrea Gibbs

You have finally brought home your new bundle of joy and are excited to start your new adventure as a parent. You spend hours caring for your little one and see her go to sleep before you take off for the night. But just as you’re about to submit to sleep for the night, one final concern pops up: What do I need to babyproof my home? For months from now, she will be able to move freely; you need to make sure that you have made your home a safe place for her. In order to be ready for these inevitable changes, you try to go to the internet for tips and advice.


You find that the answers you’re looking for are so abundant, not really leaving you with any questions at all. But then, you soon realize that while many articles generally talk about babyproofing your home, few talk about specific mistakes in the process. As a result, you feel lost and confused about how to move forward in this daunting task. Fortunately, this article aims to help such parents by pointing out the common mistakes made in babyproofing and how you can avoid them.

  1. Setting Hot Drinks Down Within Reach Of Your Little One
    It is tempting to put down your hot drink anywhere so you can take a break from her for a minute. But this is a huge mistake to encourage, as the first thing babies do when they learn how to roll over is search for things within reach. Being curious by nature, your child will probably grab it and accidentally spill it on herself in the process. The accident may cause a serious burn or injury requiring a hospital visit. This is a very common problem, which can be solved by simply keeping your hot drinks away from your baby’s reach. You can do this by placing them in a separate area and stored away in a way that they cannot be reached. You can also cover your hot drinks to discourage the little ones from nosing around them.
  2. Leaving Some Batteries Around
    It is much handier to have backup batteries in your house, as you may need them for anything from your remote control to your smoke detectors. While batteries are important, you need to make sure you store them out of your child’s reach. Children are naturally drawn to things like shiny objects, and batteries are no exception. They may think they are fun toys and, in the process, swallow a few of them by accident. This can cause serious injury or even death if they ingest the whole pack.
    The best way to prevent injury by batteries is to store them safely away from all of your children’s toys and electronics. Instead, keep them out of sight, and put them in a locked container your child cannot access. You can also use a battery cover over the batteries inside so they cannot be touched until needed. Also, instead of tossing used batteries into your household trash can, where your little one might fish them out, it is much more ideal for throwing them out directly into the outside garbage container.
  3. Letting Your Little One Play With Toys For An Older Kid
    Toys are fun for your baby to play with, and when you bring more toys home to entertain your little one, it is hard to stop yourself from letting her play with the new toys. However, you must ensure she doesn’t play with items intended for older kids. This is a huge mistake that moms often make, as they feel it is not a big deal to give their babies toys intended for their older siblings.
    Try to also keep in mind that there are certain toys that can be harmful to a baby. So if you see any toy with small parts or sharp objects, you should make sure that your baby cannot play with it. After all, your little one is too young to handle them at this stage of development, and they could cause major damage if he were to swallow them. It is also advisable that you know the toys that are appropriate for your baby and toddlers and that you discuss the items with other elder family members before bringing them home.
  4. Letting Your Babies Play with Balloons
    Balloons are a popular toy that is often given as a gift to babies on birthdays or other special occasions. They can be fun, especially when you fill them with air and let your child pop them. However, balloons are among the most common causes of choking in babies and toddlers.
    When you give your baby a balloon for the first time, make sure you supervise her every second that she is playing with it. As soon as she puts it in her mouth, try to remove it from her with caution and care. If she accidentally pops it, make sure you keep the pieces safe by placing them in a separate bag. This way, your child won’t be able to get into the pieces and swallow them, which could cause serious problems. Also, this habit can be fixed with time by keeping your balloons out of reach of your baby until he is older enough to play with them by himself.
    Mistakes are an unavoidable part of human nature. Just like mistakes in any other area of life, you need to recognize them as opportunities to make significant improvements. As we have seen, there are several common mistakes that parents tend to make in their babyproofing process, and there are ways in which you can avoid these common pitfalls. In your quest for babyproofing your home, remember that while it can be challenging, there are simple things you can do to make the process much easier.

Author bio
Andrea Gibbs is the Content Manager at SpringHive Web Agency, where she helps create content for their clients’ blogs and websites. She is currently a blog contributor at Montessori Academy, a blog dedicated to helping parents with the ins and outs of parenting children within the Montessori tradition. When she isn’t writing, she enjoys spending time with her family and her dog.

Outbound link:
Keyword: toys that are appropriate for your baby and toddlers
Location: under 3. Letting Your Little One Play With Toys For An Older Kid – second paragraph – fourth sentence
Link: https://montessori-academy.com/blog/8-awesome-open-ended-toys-that-provide-hours-of-creati ve-and-innovative-play-for-your-kids/
Image: https://www.pexels.com/photo/full-length-of-boy-sitting-on-floor-315265/

Getting ‘Up to Date’

Well, this diary was predominantly written way before covid hit us. The children were still quite young. So where are we now in their development?

Amritsar and Tara were 9 years old back in March. They are both happy, beautiful girls. And yes, they do fight often… Tara is a bit of a Tomboy, but we can still get Amritsar into a dress on occasion!

Thor (now 7) is a little charmer, and a bit of a dude! They like that word – dude! Then we have Aaliyah, who loves pink, rainbows and unicorns! And she happily gets into a dress at any opportune moment. Then there’s finally Caleb, a good looking chap as it happens, a little too prone to tantrums for my liking however.

Caleb has a few learning and socialising difficulties. We are working out a plan for his future needs with his school at present. The others all seem to be excelling at school, especially sports! Aaliyah would like to return to gymnastics. She gave it up before covid hit, falling out with the coach, who seemingly made a rude comment about her hair of all things!

Amritsar loves netball, Tara football (obviously) and Caleb is undecided on his chosen sport! It’ll come, though they all ran well on their sports day at school last week. I’m not sure about Thor’s chosen sport! He did start football club, like Tara, but doesn’t really know what to do with the ball!

The children’s summer fete was held last weekend and today’s photo is of Thor with his snakey looking face paint! Fun was had by all.

I will remind you that I am known as Dadda in the family, and my partner John is Daddy. Daddy’s work keeps him busy, and home life seems to keep me busy enough! Daddy and Dadda’s Dinner is still a thing! We do eat rather well for sure.

We are at present looking to move house. The children are all growing so fast. Their two rooms on the top floor just don’t seem to be big enough. Amritsar definitely wants her own room, as does Aaliyah. Tara would definitely be happy to kip in with the boys. Though that’s not going to happen. She does get a bit boisterous at times! And definitely leads the two boys astray.

That’s it for now. Oh! I didn’t mention Aaliyah and Caleb’s age. They will be 7 next week on 5th July. Though their party will be held the following weekend. More on that for sure.

A Happy Medium!

Before we found our ‘Family Life’

I was going to name this post ‘Instagram vs Blogging’, but I have settled on ‘A Happy Medium’!

Yesterday, quite randomly, I decided to ‘Google’ myself and was surprised at a little memory that I found… once upon a time my name, ‘Andi Webb’ would have uncovered someone else with this very same name! One lady working for the US department of Education, or maybe an artist who produced a style of art that wasn’t really me!

But yesterday I ‘Googled’ my name and I, yes me, I came up! Well, a couple of the others alongside, but predominantly me. And that made me smile.

Several mentions down, way past my Instagram, my Worldpress, my book, or rather books on Amazon, there is a mention on IMDb, the movie information site, with my name, and that brought back a happy memory! A time when I designed clothes and costume, and worked on wardrobe for a couple of productions. I even made clothing for a few major celebs…

As you know, I tend to go visual nowadays, using Instagram as my main interaction within social media. But today I thought that I would reminisce about my experience yesterday here, on my blog, at Worldpress.

I smiled as my Instagram account Instagram.com/mybigcrazyfamilylife came up first on the search, but then my blog, showing me, that it is relevant, somehow it means something! Then thirdly came my books, as mentioned, on the Amazon platform.

My audiobook of Eighteen Moons came next, then the IMDb mention…

I did enjoy designing clothes. I actually talk about this period of my life in my third book released by ‘My Life Publishing’ in January of this year. The title being ‘Many Moons Before’, the prequel to parenting. You know, I even made clothing for ‘Slash’ of Guns and Roses fame, back in ‘The Day’!

So back to the title of this post, a ‘Happy Medium’? I could not really have relayed what I am saying right now on Instagram! I forget this… I am a writer, a man with a diary… haha, predictive text has just shown me the word diarrhoea! You gotta smile…

I have made many friends on Instagram, several have purchased and reviewed my first book ‘Eighteen Moons’. And for that, I am grateful. But then again, I have made several friends over the years on Worldpress too. I hope you know who you are?

So, I have realised that I truly do want to write, and to do this with any effect, Twitter and Instagram are just not the right medium!

Lol and I can post photos on here too! that’s simply amazing. I’m sorry if they are mostly square…

So, ‘My Big Crazy Family Life’ continues, here at andiwebb.net / diaryofagaydad.net

Right, ‘A Happy Medium’ has indeed been struck! So, what about those photos I have been talking about!

Two Dads
And 5 beautiful children

I just realised!

Being back to blogging, albeit not daily, I just realised that I had reacquainted myself to you lovely people! But I have done very little by way of actually filling this diary with the day to day happenings within my family space!

Well, Aaliyah has only just hugged Remus, our Dalmatian and told him that she loves him. She is now skipping around the living room with Tara.

We are planning on going out shortly! To a local retail park to buy some ‘stuff’ at Pound Land! More, Chinese made, plastic tat, that will inevitably find its way to the bin. Especially if Caleb gets his hands on it!

A couple of Christmases ago he ripped the heads off of all 5 animal ‘squishies’ they had been given, over a 24hr period! He is still so very bad when it comes to breaking things. He makes it his mission to fidget with something until it gives / breaks.

He is presently watching ‘Siren Head’ on YouTube, on the television, with Thor! I’m not really sure if it is age appropriate! We will wait and see on that score.

Daddy has just gathered wood and kindling for a log fire that we shall light on our return home.

Tara and Amritsar are presently hugging daddy, or have they actually taken over playing daddy’s iPad? Hmmmh…

Aaliyah now doing art in the kitchen, and I? Well, I am resting on the sofa after having just served up a lunch of Sausage, mash and peas! I think that we are ordering ‘Chinese’ tonight! We only order takeaways about once a month! Last time it was Indian. Tandoori King Prawns… heaven, though a little too red looking I remember! Why do they do that?

I might give you an update on Thursday as it is my Birthday! Hoorah. I am not making a birthday cake this year, rather a pile of chocolate brownies with embedded Oreo cookies and roasted hazelnuts! Damn those hazelnuts took ages to blanch, peel and roast! Note to oneself! Buy pre done in the future! Like dressing a crab! I have learned that life is too short!

Happy Valentine’s all for tomorrow! If you celebrate it, that is! I think we are doing cards and a nice dinner of Alaskan Spider Crab and homemade triple cooked Chips / Fries… bliss!

Earlier in the day Daddy and Dadda are watching Tara play football for the school team. They are in the county quarter finals you know! Last week they won in all 4 matches they played to qualify! Fingers crossed that they are triumphant.

A very jubilant Tara last week!

More from the ‘Diary of a Gay Dad’ soon…

The Children

Somebody once told me! ‘Show me the three year old and I’ll show you the adult!’ And I believe this saying to be 100% true. As all five of our children’s personalities were set in stone very early on…

Amritsar with Gracie

Amritsar is our oldest and undoubtedly our most academic thinker. As a toddler, she would be so focussed on play and tasks undertaken, like round peg in round hole, star peg in star hole etc! Such a meticulous thinker. She is definitely our best behaved child.

Tara and Koala Babies

As this picture may suggest, Tara is our most empathetic child. She is Amritsar’s twin. The younger twin, or rather lighter, as their births were down to a C-section.

She has always shown consideration and kindness to her other siblings. Especially Caleb, the youngest and the one needing the most support.

It is no surprise that people immediately take to Tara. Every child in her school boasts her friendship! Mind you, she still has a mischievous streak! Expertly pulling the strings of our younger three to do her bidding! The ‘Puppet Master’!

Thor at Daddy’s work desk

Thor, from the very beginning has been our screamiest child. But he also brings with him character and wit. In the last two years he has progressed much. Less screamy and more witty as a result.

He will make you smile with his mumblings and muses! He has a whole repertoire of behaviours that create smiles and drama.

Just this minute he has said ‘hello Dadda, I love you Dadda’! He really is a lovely boy! But his wrath… oh my goodness, his wrath!

Aaliyah and Gracie

The older of our younger set of twins is Aaliyah. Again, older due to her weight at birth due to a C-section. She absolutely loves dogs. And she has that special affinity with Gracie our Dalmatian. Her three most beloved soft toys are all dogs.

Aaliyah is head strong and assertive! Three years ago, on our Summer break in Provence, she took to swimming like a professional. She just ‘Got It’, like a fish to water.

She also shows much compassion to her younger twin Caleb. Though they are also just as happy fighting like cats and dogs!

Caleb up a tree

Caleb, our youngest. Already mentioned twice! Yes, the children are all protective when it comes to Caleb. Well, maybe not Thor as they are often fighting! But that’s a boy thing right? Caleb is a late developer! He is at present going through various tests in order for us to ascertain his level on ‘the scale’!

He is more screamy now. Especially if he does not get his own way. Academically he struggles a lot. He is finding writing most difficult, to the degree of still misspelling his own name!

But like crawling late, walking late and talking late – he has ultimately mastered these things!

So, I hope this update on the children finds you all well, and reacquaints you a little bit with ‘My Big Crazy Family Life’!

More diary entries to follow! I thank you for stopping by. Happy weekend all…

Daddy and Dadda’s Dinner

It has been a very long time since this blog has seen a post devoted to Daddy and Dadda’s Dinner!

And we have dined at home extremely well. Simple ingredients mostly, but maximum flavour for sure.

On Instagram there is even our own hashtag #daddyanddaddasdinner which will bring up the full feast of what is our lives in food.

I will attach the last 10 foodie pics from my iPhone library and give a few basic words explaining each.

Presentation is key when you see food, you really need to excite all of the senses, appearance, smell and taste are all as important!

Red Prawn with ratatouille, salmon and sautéed creamy potatoes
Crab Linguine made with the reserved liquor from our lunchtime Mussels and Frits
Chicken Tikka’s with homemade Masala Sauce and Naan Bread
Moroccan Chicken with Couscous
Bacon, Sausage and Mushroom Terrine
Salmon and Oyster mushrooms, served with black pudding, mashed potatoes in a Savoy cabbage leaf and a white wine sauce
Lamb filet, garlic green beans and homemade dauphinois potatoes
Homemade Donor Kebab
Sea bass, scallops, Green beans and Mash
A Jersey Royal Terrine with steak, salmon, field mushrooms and petite pois ala Francaise

I think that should do for now. The first dish was Friday nights dinner! Those red prawns were excellent. Tonight we are going with Singapore noodles with prawn and a mushroom fried rice with Chinese five spice chicken! Bon Appetite Everyone!

The Wolf Moon 🌙 and a Return to My Diary

With Monday’s full moon in 2 days, the Wolf Moon, and the first full moon of 2022, I return to my ‘Diary of a Gay Dad’!!!

This will be the 16th full moon since I stopped my regular diary record in October of 2020.

With all of the children so established in their Monday to Friday schooling, I ask myself, will I have enough content for this diary blog? And the short answer is yes!

Our weekends are always so full of fun and the joys and the dramas of living a big crazy family life…

At this point, I should say sorry for not contributing more to my ‘high days and holidays’ promise to sharing something to this diary these last sixteen moons.

So with that said and done! Expect to see me in your feeds a little more often. And I will make you a deal! If spending this absent time from blogging in getting to grips with Instagram has taught me anything! I sincerely promise you – if you send a blog post of mine a like, I will courteously respond to your blog by reading your latest post and liking it in return. The same can be said about comments! If you comment on my post, I will respond by paying you with the very same attention and commenting back on your latest post.

It will be great to get reacquainted with you all. And hopefully our friendships will blossom once again…

My first entry on diaryofagaydad.net is a happy one as it is Daddy’s (John’s) birthday today. We have just enjoyed Birthday Cake in the kitchen and the children are all now settled and watching a movie. Sindy our nanny is still with us you will be happy to know. And she is very kindly coming in this evening to babysit, allowing Daddy and Dadda to venture out for a meal at one of our favourite local restaurants.

An update on that tomorrow perhaps. It’s lovely to be back guys.

So, now can I finally take this moment to say ‘Wishing you all a wonderful 2022’ and let us all continue to dare to dream…

Many Moons Before

It has been a while since I have put pen to paper at andiwebb.net! But this month is certainly one to celebrate! My third book release has just happened on Amazon.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/1739754638/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1643550765&sr=8-6

This memoir is the prequel to my previous 2 books. You may remember that the first book, Eighteen Moons, was the story of how John and I became ‘Gay Dads’, and the second book is a year taken from this actual diary, ‘Thirteen Moons More’.

Many Moons Before takes you on a journey through my adult life, lived in London Town, taking us up to the moment that ‘Eighteen Moons’ begins. At very least, check out the book blurb via the link.

If you are not in the U.K. just search ‘Many Moons Before’ in your countries Amazon browser. Or ‘Andi Webb’ of course, to bring up all three book titles. All are an amazing read I’ve been told! Just look at the reviews…

Some of you may remember that I had been considering a project to write a Jam Making, recipes and lifestyle book Dadda Gets Jammin’ and this will be undertaken in 2022. A recipe book quite unlike any other!

But for new, do check out ‘Many Moons Before’ you’ll be happy that you did. The Trilogy now complete…

And don’t forget to follow us on Instagram. Instagram.com/mybigcrazyfamilylife

My Final Diary Entry, At Least For Now!

It is with some regret that on the 2nd anniversary of my diary blog diaryofagaydad.net, I have to explain, that after these past 24 months of sharing the ups and downs of parenthood, my musings on this forum have (for now) come to an end. I will of course leave the archive online and intact if you ever chose to relive the ups and the downs of 2 years of parenting five small children?

A message from a fellow blogger tonight that ‘I am bored’, has lead me to the conclusion that it is now time to step away!

No pictures, no finale, no fanfare, just goodbye for now my friends…

On other social media such as Facebook, I do not post often. But if you found any part of my blog something positive to muse over (btw predictive text just flashed up ‘pissup’ lol) just search ‘Andi Webb London’ and I will surely follow you back!

The other option is Instagram of course! http://www.instagram.com/mybigcrazyfamilylife

I am certainly considering ‘Diary of a a gay Dad, the teenage years’ though 4+ years away at this point! Another time altogether, maybe it will be a great time for us both to catchup once again.

Thank you for listening these last 2 years, thank you for being there and ultimately thank you for caring. I am very happy to know you.

And for those that I am not connected to on other social media platforms, good bye and take care.

Instagram???

It seems that Instagram has taken over my online time investment! It would seem, at the expense of my diary writing!

But is Instagram a kind of visual diary?

Perhaps, but without dialogue, there is fundamentally a problem! No context I guess!

But then again, for those more popular than I, on Instagram, comments on pictures can create another sort of factor, a mini conversation!

I do love it when some of you lovely people comment on this, my blog! I thank you all for that!

And now a few recent Instagram pics, without context, just random images really!

Daddy and Dadda’s Dinner

Well, being a man of relatively few words nowadays, I have chosen to highlight another ‘Daddy and Dadda’s Dinner’.

Mind you, we have dined out thrice in these last 2 weeks or so! Fine dining in the Egyptian inspired tent at the Vineyard near Newbury amongst other gastronomic destinations that are not too far away from us in ‘The Shires’.

Always a memory of the years we holidayed on the ‘Costa del Sol’. Spanish Tortilla and Frits.

Though on this occasion, some of Dadda’s Triple cooked Chips!

A family staple of Red Shrimp Bisque, fine beans and boiled potatoes.

A Beef and Mushroom pie is always a good idea! Hold the milk or beaten egg on the pie topping. For that extra special, slightly blistered effect, brush with double cream before baking!

Spaghetti and Dadda’s meatballs are always well appreciated!

As you know, we love green beans and this dish of Lebanese green beans were an amazing side dish to Dadda’s Moroccan lamb (not pictured).

How do you serve Trout? I prefer simply.

Lamb filet with Dauphinois potatoes is worth pushing the boat out for. Though I should have used that pun on the previous Trout entry! Elevated of course with Dadda’s home made mint jelly. A condiment of pure bliss.

That’s all for now! The children are all well and today we are enjoying the garden in sunshine. There is talk about bike riding in a bit! Did I mention that both Aaliyah and Thor have started bike riding without stabilisers! Well done both of them.

Birthday Cake

What with 5 children, though 2 sets of twins and Daddy and Dadda’s Birthdays, I do find myself baking birthday cakes quite a lot over the year. I have been known to bake twice on Amritsar and Tara’s birthdays, as they generally have an official birthday on the actual day and then another for the day of their party.

Of course, this year the girls just had their birthday with the family on the day itself, due to lockdown. And the same will be so of Aaliyah and Caleb’s special day, this year falling on Sunday.

So just the one cake to bake today. All a bit last minute as I usually bake a week or so before and freeze the sponges x 3. This cake however will be just the 2 layers as I only had 6 eggs and there’s clearly less people involved, just a neighbouring family.

The second sponge is almost done. I’m just waiting on Alexa to ping the 22 minute alarm. The ‘All angels’ are singing through Alexa, something or other from the musical ‘South Pacific’.

I am now remembering our Lū’au earlier in the spring when we had such magnificent weather. I did homemade Hawaiian Pizza on that day. A barbecue for us however on Sunday! I think more grey weather is forecast sadly, so cooking it all on the Aga inside might just be more appropriate.

Okay Alexa is telling me the cake is now done, so I had better wrestle it from the oven!

The children are presently in the park beside their school with Sindy and 5 x packed dinners, celebrating a friend Nancy’s birthday. Possibly appropriate given my afternoon bake. I should really thank Nancy’s mum for buying Eighteen Moons and Thirteen Moons More a few weeks ago. I believe she loved both books so I’m hoping for a review perhaps on Amazon.

Did I say that the audiobook is now live? So, for those of you who don’t really read books or novels, it’s the perfect escape with nothing to do, just close your eyes and join me on my journey of ‘Eighteen Moons’.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/B08B73G6L3/ref=tmm_aud_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=&sr=

Back to birthday cakes! The request this year was Strawberry and Vanilla opposed to the usual chocolate ganache. And that’s what they’re getting. Though I can almost hear Caleb’s bleats of ‘But I want chocolate Dadda, I want chocolate’, just before he throws a tantrum…

No doubt more on the Birthday celebrations on Sunday. As ever, thanks for reading.

Today’s Instagram Pictures

As today’s title would indicate, here is an assortment of images that I chose for Instagram. Please follow for a follow back!

Some toddler pictures of Tara and Amritsar today, plus some foodie related images! I want to hold onto them for a moment as I am sure that my diary is about due an update on Daddy and Dadda’s Dinner! Perhaps tonight!

Thank you for stopping by.