Being a father of two young boys during this pandemic can be challenging. It has made me change how I parent on almost a weekly basis.

Since we are no longer able to go to places on weekends, like the trampoline park, we have discovered the joys of hiking the many beautiful state parks in both New York and Connecticut. But this has been especially true the last few weeks in the Strange household.

You dread getting that call from the school. The call when they say someone in your child’s class has tested positive. It immediately puts my wife and I in a panic. What if I get sick? I have a compromised immune system. My wife works from home. What would we do?

We got tested right away and were negative. That was a relief. But now we have our children home for a few weeks. We are both busy at work. We have grown accustomed to having them out of the house for a few hours out of the day, so we can get our work done.

We don’t want them watching TV/iPad all day so we have to take breaks in our schedule to spend time with the kids. I have a little more luxury because I have started a new job, and I can work a flexible schedule.  Cameron was able to go back to school after the test results came back.

This week we decided that maybe we should get out of the house for a few days. We decided to have a staycation at a local hotel. The kids love going into a pool. Plus, one of us can stay there at night and get some much-needed sleep.

We didn’t want to go far because we have the puppy at home, and we needed to take her out every few hours for walks. This is probably the reason why so many people said don’t get a dog…

The plan has worked perfectly. The kids feel like they are on a real vacation. They love staying at hotels. They go into the pool multiple times daily.

The only distractions were my complete fascination with posting memes with Bernie Sanders. 

This idea is something that is simple and easy. I think everyone should give it a try. It’s cold outside. I find it so relaxing, the kids love it. 

There was one real moment of reflection of the times. I was in the elevator and I looked in the mirror. I had a mask on, and I thought to myself, is this really what the new norm is? 

By the time you are reading this, we are back to reality.  But a great getaway weekend was needed and we didn’t have to go far.

Native New Yorker, now living in Connecticut. Husband, and father of two amazing boys. Kidney transplant recipient, and a big supporter of organ donation #donatelife. Mortgage banker, but not by choice. In my free time, I enjoy golf, reading (especially presidential biographies), and finding that hole in the wall restaurant that has great food.

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