Need Ideas for Father's Day?

by Melissa D. Jaramillo

little girl with paint on handsJune rolls around and we suddenly recall those important men in our lives -- our own fathers, special uncles, grandpas, brothers, and husbands. We long to find a way to express just how much they mean to our families... something really we should be doing throughout the year. Material items (sometimes known as "boy toys"), ranging from the latest electronic gadget to a new fishing pole are perhaps a good choice and would be appreciated.

This article however is meant to offer suggestions for those gifts of the heart instead. Whether you are looking for ideas for the father-to-be, for your spouse, from kids, for granddad or something more, get creative and have fun!

For the Father-to-Be

Put together a gift basket filled with appropriate items -- each with a note. Some suggestions on what to include:

  • Countdown to expected due date calendar, with notes sharing your thoughts of him as a father to your child(ren) from the beginning of when you first learned of your pregnancy. Continue to update this as time progresses as it will serve as a very special keepsake of this precious time together.
  • A bottle of Tylenol: Include a note sharing that this may help him survive not only the pregnancy and labor; but beyond -- especially in those first six weeks of no sleep where he begins to wonder just what on earth he was thinking!
  • A gas mask -- ok, barring that a paper mask at least! Who knew something so tiny could qualify for a biological weapon?
  • Framed ultrasounds or commemorative DVD/video of your pregnancy are extra special mementoes; another idea? Tape record your baby's heartbeat and include a note reminding your husband that truly this exemplifies the idea of "two hearts" (yours and his!) "beating as one" (your child's).
  • Favorite children's books along with some blank tapes. Encourage your daddy-to-be to "read aloud" to your little cargo while you operate the recorder. Continue to play these throughout your pregnancy and rest assured that as your child grows these will continue to be favorites. (Suggestion: Make more than one copy and store the second in a safe place just in case)

Create a Scrapbook: For this you may want to journey through your relationship and ultimate path to parenthood together. Begin with a "how you met" page and record your memories of when you knew you were falling in love. Find ways to incorporate whatever little things you may have saved.

  • Ticket stubs, receipts, pictures or items such as a seashell that reminds you of that walk on the beach.
  • Still have that home pregnancy test? You can include that here as well!
  • Don't forget to write down how you told him the news! Incorporate things that will remind him of the pregnancy journey thus far
  • Perhaps a coupon from Dairy Queen, where you frequently have asked him to run to satisfy that latest craving!

Get Creative! Does your spouse have a sense of humor? Some amusing ideas include using fabric paints for hats and t-shirts. Allow your imagination to run wild! Some personal favorites included taking a hat, pinning on a pacifier (or more than one!) The saying written on: "Daddy-To-Be.. the paci is mine!" We also designed a t-shirt -- "Daddy-To-Be" with an arrow pointing down to his belly. Underneath the words: "It's sympathy pains -- really!"

For Dad/Granddad (from kids)

Photos depicting some favorite moments of child(ren) interacting with dad/granddad are always welcome. You can get even more resourceful by using these as backgrounds or frames for a desk set, paperweight, even a coffee mug! If using these to create a "Daddy (Granddad) & Me" book, be certain to do so from a child's perspective as much as possible. Age appropriate kids can create their own!

Calendar: Similar to the above, help your child choose favorite photos, adding a note for each, and create a timeless calendar keepsake