Stay-at-Home Dad 101: Tommy John Lounge Jogger Pants are Now My Official “Work Pants” (Includes Jingle I Wrote!)


Tommy John partnered with bloggers such as myself for this program. I received one free product of my choosing, for my time and creativity. I was not told what to purchase nor what to say about any product mentioned in these posts. Tommy John believes that consumers and bloggers are free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. Tommy John’s policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, FTC guidelines and social media engagement recommendations.

Now that we got that fun part out of the way, I get to talk about what I am calling my new official “work pants”, as a stay-at-home dad who works from home.

If you can imagine, since becoming a stay-at-home dad exactly 3 months ago today, I haven’t gotten out of the house much. I’m constantly taking care of my 21 month-old daughter all day, as well as my 7 year-old son, when he’s not at school.

I feel that I really put the “stay-at-home” in stay-at-home dad.

With that being said, it’s still important to me that I don’t look or feel like a slob; even if the only people who see me all day are my wife and kids.

So when Tommy John reached out to me and offered an item from their online catalog, I immediately thought, “I would love some new work pants!”

By browsing their Loungewear section, I ended up choosing their Lounge Jogger pants.

Once I received them in the mail this week, my preconceived ideas about these pants were true:

They are perfect for me as a stay-at-home dad!

The immediate thing I noticed is how comfortable they are. I feel like I’m really getting away with something, somehow. It’s I’m like wearing pants but I don’t feel like I’m actually wearing them.

I have to question, “Am I pulling a Donald Duck right now? Did I remember to put on a shirt only to  neglect actually put on pants today?”

Then I look down and see that no, I am indeed wearing pants: Tommy John Lounge Jogger pants, to be exact.

The next thing I really like about these pants is how they are just tight enough around the ankles, so that the bottom of my pants don’t drag on the floor.

And the pockets- ah, the pockets… perfectly in place where I need them.

I never know when I’m going to need to pick up a Cheerio my daughter dropped or her Peppa the Pig doll when she needs me to hold it for her.

After experiencing the Tommy John Lounge Pants, I just can’t imagine how any man would not love them.

But for me specifically as a stay-at-home dad, I am now spoiled, and don’t want to wear anything else for pants. I guess that would be my only complaint!

I have enjoyed my new work pants so much that I took it upon myself to write a jingle for Tommy John lounge pants and shoot my own commercial.  That way, when potential consumers search “Tommy John Lounge Pants“, they get to see me perform my awesome song! (Featured at the top of this post.)

Along the way, my kids apparently enjoyed hearing me write and practice the jingle, so we ended up even shooting a “kids’ version” of the song as well. My 21 month-old daughter is responsible for most of the dance moves for the jingle. (Featured below.)

It is plain to see, these Tommy John Lounge Pants have really enhanced my week!


Dear Holly: Your Front Row Seat for the Snow

1 year, 8 months.

Dear Holly,

As the snow began falling down Tuesday morning, you took it up yourself to go grab your director’s chair, and move it to the kitchen. You wanted a front row seat for the snow.

While it has definitely snowed in your lifetime, I can tell that this time around, you really seemed intrigued by the concept of white powder falling from the sky, and seeing your brother and your Daddy being able to sled in it; as you looked out the window with Mommy.

Accordingly, this has been your first real experience being snowed in. Your brother has been doing his best to help you navigate it.

He has been generous to hold you up higher to get a better view of the snow outside.

He has been kind to let you casually hang out next to him as he catches up on his favorite shows on Netflix.

And he has been helpful in letting me know when you need a refill on Cheerios, in your “baby buffet” of snacks that I lay out across the kitchen table for you.

I wonder if when you’re older, you’ll be as eager to get out there in the snow as your brother is. My hesitation is knowing how much Mommy doesn’t like being outside in extreme temperatures. It can’t be too cold or too hot, for her to be able to enjoy it.

As for your brother and me, we love being outside that we don’t care what it’s like out there.

We just need the adventure and the fresh air.

So I do wonder, will you end up joining us once you get older?

There’s a lot to explore outside with us. We always find adventures.

For now though, you’re better off indoors with your director’s chair and your Cheerios.



Dear Jack: We’ve Been Snowed in for a Week Now, Technically

7 years, 2 months.

Dear Jack,

It’s now been a week since you’ve been to school. This is like Christmas vacation again, but with snow… and without all the presents.

A week ago we were informed that your school was going to be closed due to the chance of a blizzard the next day on Friday. Knowing you were also going to be off from school the following Monday for Martin Luther King Day, I mentioned to Mommy at dinner:

“Let me throw a crazy idea at you…”

She stopped me, as she had instantly read my mind:

I took you and your sister to Alabama so we could stay at Nonna and Papa’s house for a 4 day weekend, while Mommy stayed back in Tennessee to get caught up on work.

You and your sister got plenty of quality time with your grandparents; meanwhile, I got a little bit more caught up on one of my most coveted commodities: Sleep!

It was so rewarding to just head upstairs and sleep for 2 or 3 hours, knowing you and your sister were being taken care of.

And it turns out, it didn’t actually snow while we were gone.

But sure enough, on Tuesday, when you were supposed to go back to school, that’s when the mini blizzard actually arrived.

Our family has been snowed since then.

Hopefully, the roads will be cleared up enough for you to return to school tomorrow, which is Friday. At that point, it will have been a solid week without you going to school. Even then, you will just be there for one day and then it’s the weekend again.

You and I did get a couple chances to enjoy the snow outside, while Mommy stayed inside with your sister. But even then, the temperature has remained around 9 degrees most of this week, so we couldn’t stay outside all that long.

What an interesting week.



Stay-at-Home Dad 101: I Don’t Miss Feeling Pressured to Drive to Work in the Snow and Ice

The picture collage you see here is one that I felt compelled to make nearly three years ago. My family had already been snowed in two days, and it was soon to be the third.

Despite living just a mile from the main road, my actual home was located down a slope in the dead end of the neighborhood: the cul-de-sac.

It was obvious to me that if I simply backed out of my garage, my vehicle would get stuck in the snow and ice, as my vehicle was not a 4×4 and therefore couldn’t make it out.

Still, I went through the motions of proving how dedicated I was to coming to work:

I started up my car, backed out of the garage, tried to make it up the hill, slid down the hill backwards, then quickly got stuck trying to simply make it out of my own cul-de-sac. And now, my already old and worn-out vehicle would have to remain out in harsh weather, which only increased the chances of another vehicle accidentally sliding into it, or the battery dying from the freezing temperatures.

To further cover my bases, I took a photo of my stuck vehicle, as well as one of my shoe; as I was standing on my street, which had an inch-thick sheet of ice under the snow. I also did my best to show the angle of the slope on my street where my vehicle got stuck.

Minutes later, I had put together the photo collage and emailed it to all interested parties, to provide community-wide evidence that I was not simply unmotivated to leave my family and the snow.

I had already been working for the company for over 7 years at this point and I was a supervisor for most of that time; yet I felt that providing picture proof was a nearly necessary move. Otherwise, people who lived only a few miles from the office could try to say, “Well I made it into today… are you just afraid to drive in the snow and ice?”

The least of my worries was that I was having to accept the fact I was using vacation days to be stuck at stay home; even though I wanted to be at work. This was problematic in that every summer, our family always spends a week out in California to visit my wife’s side of the family: I was cutting in to my reserve of days for that trip.

I imagine that feeling pressured to drive to work under dangerous weather conditions is a normal part of American culture, especially in the South; where we are understandably not equipped with the snow plows our towns need when it snows sporadically during the winter.

But you know what? I am now a stay-at-home dad who works from home now. Not my problem anymore.

The only one pressuring me to leave the house is my 7 year-old son who is eager to play in the snow. I think I can handle that.

Cat Deely’s “This Time Next Year” Premiers January 16th on the Lifetime Network

Tomorrow, Tuesday January 16th, is the premiere of the American version of “This Time Next Year“, hosted by Cat Deely; who is also known as the host of So You Think You Can Dance.

If you have access to the Lifetime Network, you can see the very first episode tomorrow when it comes on at 9 PM Eastern Time, which is 8 PM Central Time.

The show documents the journeys of Americans who had a personal goal they were trying to reach over the course of a year. Each hour long episode features stories of several different people or families.

I can tell you for a fact (for some mysterious I am not officially permitted to declare yet) that this is going to be an amazing show!

You’ll laugh. You’ll cry. You’ll be glad you watched it.

So, for now, I highly recommend you get familiar with the show, because perhaps later on in the series, you’ll have a special reason to especially watch a certain episode.

But as for tomorrow, January 16th, as you can see on the schedule for Lifetime on their website, here’s a little preview about the very first episode:

This Time Next Year

  • S1| E1
  • The Impossible Is Possible NEW
  • TV-PG

Host Cat Deely welcomes people who make a commitment to life changing yearlong goal whose results the audience will see instantly. A young man who pledges to walk again after a tragic car accident has left him in a wheelchair, a couple who has suffered through 15 years of infertility, a woman struggling to lose a 100 pounds, a middle aged housewife aspiring to be a body builder, and a man willing to give his fianc e his own kidney for her life saving transplant so they can live happily ever after.

Stay tuned to Family Friendly Daddy Blog for more details, hopefully in the very near future, about the intriguing new television program premiering on the Lifetime Network.

Why I Chose to Cover Johnny Cash’s “Folsom Prison Blues”…. Yes, I Sing and Play Guitar.

When I moved to Nashville on September 11, 2005, it was because I wanted a chance at a career in music; writing songs, singing, and playing guitar.

The problem was, I had earned my college degree in English and was naturally thousands of dollars in debt. Therefore, I accidentally got a full-time job in HR; where I ended up working over a decade of my life.

Obviously, along the way, I found the love of my life, got married, had two kids, and moved to the suburbs.

But my love for doing music never stopped. It was just on hiatus.

Then when my office branch got shut down this past October, forcing me to become a stay-at-home dad, I had to find creative ways to exercise my mind while caring for my young daughter.

Fortunately, she didn’t mind playing on the floor while I played my guitar.

Just the week before I lost my job, I had taken a couple of days off work and met up with a new friend, out in Los Angeles. He also sings and plays guitar. As a souvenir from Nashville, I brought him a very Johnny Cash themed t-shirt.

That stuck in my mind.

So I figured, why not play a Johnny Cash song and put it on YouTube? And that happens to be the video featured at the top of this blog post.

I think part of the strange appeal of “Folsom Prison Blues” is that it’s told from the perspective of a convicted murderer who openly admits he committed the crime, despite his mother’s proactive warnings from the time he was even too young to understand he apparently was predestined for a life of crime.

The song challenges the listener to have compassion on the kind of person most people easily ignore.

As time allows, I definitely plan to record more songs on this new YouTube channel, Nick Shell Music; which is actually my 3rd YouTube channel. Eventually, I plan to release some new original songs of mine.

If nothing else, I am simply doing this for me. Just because I enjoy it.

Maybe you will too.

Dear Holly: Your Surprise Christmas Gift Arrived in the Mail!

1 year, 8 months.

Dear Holly,

The plan was for Uncle Joe, Aunt Rebecca, and your cousin Savannah to drive up from Pensacola to spend the Christmas holidays in Alabama with us at Nonna and Papa’s house. That was inspired by how well their Thanksgiving visit went just a month earlier.

However, the three of them got way too sick to ever leave Florida. So sadly, unfortunately, we didn’t get to see them as planned.

But even still, our family was pleasantly surprised this past week when an expected box arrived on our doorstep.

It turns out, Aunt Rebecca had our Christmas gifts shipped to us in the mail, so we could celebrate Christmas a little bit longer, into the new year.

I loved watching you open your gift. Your face lit up, “Baby!!!”

It was a Cabbage Patch Kids Cuties doll. And since that day you opened it, you’ve yet to spend a day without it.

You take the doll with you to bed, you push it in the stroller, and you attempt to even eat your meals with it.

As for your brother Jack, he was obviously pleased to receive a whoopee cushion, silly string, and slime. And Mommy loved her Mary Kay products.

Even I received something cool!

It’s a new mug with a big pickle for a handle. The next day at lunch, you sat next to me as I enjoyed my standard Ramen noodles it; while you munched on oatmeal.

There’s just nothing like getting a gift after you weren’t expecting to get anymore gifts. Typically, if there’s a mysterious box waiting for us on our doorstep, it’s because Mommy ordered something on Amazon, like a new water filter for our refrigerator.

But not this time.

This time, our whole family got a fun surprise!