Are there ways of knowing whether a man will make a good father? Some sort of definitive predictors? Perhaps a checklist or a DNA test? If there were such a thing, what characteristics would they test for? What factors determine whether a man will become a great father?
My husband and I met in college. We certainly weren’t thinking of kids at the time. We were just kids ourselves. Some of our earliest memories involve pitching hot dogs out of his dorm room window to watch them explode. Our attraction had more to do with each other’s beer pong skills than it did with future parenting abilities. Could I have known at the time that he would someday make at great dad? At what point in our relationship did it start mattering? Could I have been certain, even as we said our wedding vows, that he’d be as excellent a father as he was a husband?
I’m not sure it’s possible to be absolutely positive that someone will make a good dad before they actually are one. Parenthood is such a life-changing experience. It requires more of you than you’ve ever given; parts of you that you may not have known were there. Fourteen years ago, I couldn’t have known whether my husband would make a good father. But over the years, we got to know and love each other. We grew and matured together. And, in the way that he treated me, I came to know a good man; a selfless, considerate, gentle, and kind man.
So, I suspected. In fact, I would have bet money on it. But, it wasn’t until I saw the look on his face, in the moment our first son was born, that I knew for sure. He was a father and a dad all at once, in that instant. And, as I recovered from the birth and a debilitating spinal headache, he cared for our newborn baby with apparent ease. When I was nervous and uncertain, he was a natural; calm and confident. And, since those very first moments in the hospital, he has been a loving, selfless, and devoted father to our boys. The good man, who has loved me for all of these years, turned out to be the most wonderful father.
Did I luck out or were there clues in those early days? Probably a little bit of both. Come to think of it, it probably won’t be too long before he’s hanging out the window with our kids, throwing hot dogs onto the pavement, as they all laugh along. I’ll probably join in.
So, this morning we celebrated my husband, the wonderful father, with breakfast in bed. If I were cooking for my own amazing father this morning, there’d be corned beef hash, an egg over-easy, and well-done rye toast on the menu; a man after my own heart or more likely, I after his! (Love you, Daddy!!) But, my husband’s more of a strawberry-stuffed french toast kind of guy with applewood-smoked bacon on the side.
Strawberry Stuffed French Toast
- 8 slices Challah Bread
- 1 package Cream Cheese, softened
- 1/4 cup Sugar
- 8-10 Strawberries, sliced
- 4 Eggs
- 1/4 cup Cream
- 1/8 tsp Salt
- 1/4 tsp Cinnamon
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- Butter, for pan
- Powdered Sugar, for garnish
- Maple Syrup
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Place a baking sheet in the oven. In a bowl, beat together cream cheese and sugar. Spread the cream cheese mixture onto each slice of bread. Place sliced strawberries on four of the slices. Use the other four slices of bread to create cream cheese-strawberry sandwiches. In a small baking dish, beat together eggs, cream, salt, vanilla, and cinnamon. In a pan, heat a little butter. One at a time, dip each sandwich into the egg mixture, so that it lightly coats both pieces of bread. Cook in the pan, flipping once until both sides are lightly browned. Then, place it on the baking sheet in the oven. Repeat until each sandwich has been cooked. Allow the sandwiches to cook for 5-10 minutes in the oven to ensure that they are fully cooked. The cream cheese will be melty and the strawberries slightly softened. Cut each sandwich into two pieces and sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve with maple syrup.
Happy Father’s Day to my husband, my Daddy, and all of the wonderful fathers out there!