Category Archives: Miscellaneous

Join Me and My Cousins at the Global Family Reunion

canvas4-150x150 In June I’ll be attending my very first family reunion—and boy will it be a big one! In fact, it’ll very likely set a new record for the biggest family reunion in history!

It’s called the Global Family Reunion, and it’s being billed as a “family reunion meets a world’s fair meets a music festival meets a TED conference.” Activities include musical performances, guest speakers, concerts, and demonstrations. Sounds amazing. I’m in!

The event is being organized by AJ Jacobs, a fascinating writer and “human guinea pig.” Some of AJ’s previous projects include outsourcing his life, reading the entire Encyclopedia Brittanica, and living biblically for a year. What’s different about the Global Family Reunion project is that everyone is invited to participate. I’m taking him up on it!

Soon after hearing about the Global Family Reunion, I visited WikiTree to look for a connection to AJ. WikiTree is a massive, collaborative, online family tree. New WikiTree users begin by uploading their own family tree information. They can then find any common ancestors from other member trees, and upon confirming the relationships, the trees can be merged together. This is where the real magic happens. As more connections are made, the tree continues to grow and becomes even easier to connect to. It’s been steadily growing in this way since 2008.

I joined WikiTree over a year ago and have made a lot of new connections, so I was eager to log in and try my chances at finding a relation to AJ. I entered my WikiTree-ID into the “100 Degrees of AJ” connection finder, and within seconds I was able see a path to him in 31 steps! Hooray!

Being a confirmed relation to AJ will qualify me to participate in a record-setting family photo, which I’m really excited about–I love records! What’s more–AJ has already discovered that he’s related to the likes of Albert Einstein, George W. Bush, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Daniel Radcliffe, just to name just a few, which means I am too!

While the Global Family Reunion sounds like a day chock-full of fun, it’s also interesting to think about the larger, long-lasting implications of how we’re all related. Spreading the idea that we’re all related is a great service to all of humanity. This awareness can only help to make the world a better, more connected place.

The Global Family Reunion will take place on June 6th, 2015,  at the The New York Hall of Science, on the grounds of the World’s Fair. All proceeds will benefit Alzheimer’s. I hope to see you there, cousin!

 

Challenging the Dixie Cup Tower Record on RecordSetter.com

My daughter and I currently hold the world record for largest Dixie cup tower on RecordSetter.com. We unseated the previous record holder of 91 cups by stacking a 136 cup tower, only to blast it apart with our Nerf arsenal.  There are all sorts of records on RecordSetter.com, from the very serious to the downright bizarre. Examples include most catches juggling four balls while swimming, and most fiery bricks broken with one bare hand in 30 seconds while playing an electric guitar.

Anyone can create and upload a new record or challenge a current record. So what are you waiting for? Set your own record, or if you’d like, break ours!

PA Cigar Box Festival at the York Emporium

IMG_6316We finally had the chance to attend the annual Pennsylvania Cigar Box Guitar Festival at the York Emporium, a fantastic used bookstore and curiosity shop. While the weather wasn’t the best, we still were able to see some amazingly hand-crafted cigar box guitars and hear some live music. Check out the Facebook page for more photos as well as video. I didn’t come home with a cigar box guitar, but that’s only because I’m hoping to make my own someday soon.

IMG_6319 IMG_6318 IMG_6312 IMG_6308

We mainly came for the cigar box guitars, but made it a point to browse inside, too. While it’s super tough to browse a book store with two young, rambunctious kids, I was able to buy enough time to pick something out from a huge pile of old, digest-sized pulp science fiction magazines. I chose a copy of Fantastic from October, 1955, and I’m excited to read it.Fantastic IMG_6331 IMG_6325

Chasing Butterflies

Hiking with children can be tricky and slow-going, but it’s totally worth the effort. Last weekend, we set out to hike a trail that runs along a tranquil stream. I wanted to hunt for geodes, but the kids were more interested in skipping stones. I was preparing to turn around when the kids spotted a clearing up ahead, so I promised to go only that far, take a brief rest, and start heading back. As we approached the clearing, we spotted a rabble of butterflies chilling out in an old fire pit. 

A rabble of #butterflies we were lucky to find on a family hike!

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The kids had been in butterfly tents before, but getting up close and personal in nature was infinitely more amazing. It’s too bad we left our butterfly net at home when we really needed it!

A #butterfly net would have been really helpful!

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Even so, the kids had tons of fun getting up close to the butterflies and chasing them around. They’re already asking to go back, and I’m trying to explain to them that the butterflies may likely be gone by then. That’s ok, they explained, maybe next time we can find a unicorn! Do they make a net for that?

I’m a Super Milk Man!

I’m excited to announce that thanks to the team at Life of Dad, I’ve been selected as one of twenty-five official blogger entrants in a contest where the prize is (wait for it) breakfast with The Rock!

TheRock

It is all part of the promotion of The Rock’s milk campaign, which you may recall from his 2013 Super Bowl “got milk?” ad. This hits home for us here at Secret Dad Society, where milk is king. Our kids’ favorite breakfast is milk and cereal, which is often the very first thing my little sleepyheads ask for every morning as we head downstairs. We’ve been fortunate that they haven’t caught on to sugary drinks, and that the sippy cups stay well stocked with water and milk all day long. With picky eaters, it is such a great way to get the protein my children need to fuel them throughout the day. It certainly helps fuel daddy as well! For more on milk recipes, tips, and other fun, visit The Breakfast Project.

I’m extremely excited to be a part of this contest. I can’t stop imagining what questions I’d ask The Rock in person, and how ridiculous I’d look standing side-by-side with him, especially since we sport the same hairdo. Then there is the fact that I’m undeniably short by average standards. Heck, I’m short even by middle school standards, so putting my tiny, bald physique next to The Rock would basically make me his mini-me. If he’s The Rock, I’d be the Pebble. Oh, and I can do quite the eyebrow arch to boot. Yes, it would be the utmost coolest experience indeed.

As a contest participant, I had to make an Instagram video showing how milk helps to make me a super dad throughout the day. It’s my first Instagram video and was so much fun to make. Please view my video entry here: Super Milk Man. Did you happen to catch the large cardboard castle fort at the end? A post about that is coming soon!

You can also view some of the other great entries by following #SuperMilkMan on Instagram, and don’t forget to follow @MilkMustache and @LifeofDadShow for even more milk fun!

All contest entrants are paid by Life of Dad, LLC to participate in this event. My children, however, are not paid to drink milk.

Yard Sailing and the Giant Ape!

We had a great time yard sailing yesterday. My wife and kids all picked up a bunch of neat stuff. Some of my highlights include finding the game Risk, which I has long been on my list of board games to buy. It had been opened but never played, with all of the armies still in sealed bags – score!

RiskI was equally happy to find a sweet Mayan statue for my bookshelf.

Statue And best of all, we came across  a house with an attached garage under the protection of a giant ape! Overall, it was an epic yard sale outing,

Ape garage

Mayan statue: $1.

Risk: $2

Gigantic garage ape: Priceless.