Yes, I read a daddy book during the first three weeks of my wife’s pregnancy. No, I am not ashamed about it. It prepared me for a ton of stuff that would have surely sounded like gibberish had I not had somewhat of an insight ahead of time. One of the more interesting ones was Nesting. In short, this refers to the concept that a mother will have the natural desire to “prepare the nest” for the arrival of their offspring. Kind of a funny concept, as most of us would immediately think of a bird prepping a nest for eggs. Which is even funnier when the book basically says, “When this happens, get out of the way and say nothing.” I’m going to be honest, the first draft of this blog had the story of how we made decisions and designed a living space for my future daughter. While interesting, I didn’t make many of the decisions and really was tasked with making sure everything was put together correctly. So why write a blog for nesting for dads? Because, technology! Here are few things I have been attempting to do to make nesting fun for future Dads.
Smart Assistant. Google, Amazon, Kasa, Siri, whatever you desire. Point is, get a smart assistant that can handle a lot of this stuff for you. I got a Google Home for my living room and one for the nursery. This way I can control things in that room without disturbing a sleeping child. Now, with Alexa and Google Assistant each having an inexpensive model to choose from, this should be a low barrier starting point to automation. I personally use Google since I have already signed over my life to them, but Alexa integrates with a lot of home appliances already as well, and works pretty great. Just pick one out and grab two.
Temperature. Whether you have a home and control your own heat and AC, or live in NYC and rely on your landlord/management company and a window unit, using your new smart assistant to control the nursery temperature is a must. For central heat/AC, make sure you get a Nest system or some other wifi based hub and setup a zone for the nursery. For everyone else – grab a Frigidaire window AC with wifi. Controlling your temperature in the nursery is a great way to constantly keep the room comfortable. Using the mobile apps associated with each system, you can even set the temps while on the go for future arrivals.
Music. This one is pretty self explanatory, but if you are completely new to Smart Assistants, you should know that they are natural speakers. Sync up your Spotify, Pandora, Amazon Music and you should be able to start and stop music in the nursery when the baby stirs. “Rockabye Baby” is a pretty amazing artist that remixes pretty much every type of music into a lullabye, so you don’t have to hear the same ones over and over. Oh, and a PSA: pay for whatever service you choose to use. It supports the artists and even more, you won’t get ads, which pretty much ruin any music listening experience and are also guaranteed to wake your child. Be an adult, pay for premium.
Smart Outlets. These are plugs that allow you to control anything else in the room that goes ON and OFF. For those items that aren’t wifi enabled, this is an easy way to get the automated experience anyway. Ceiling fans, lights, blinds, etc. If it can turn on and off, you can control it. I use the Kasa TP-Link system as they integrate will with Google Assistant, however WeMo is the biggest name out there. Either way, just ensure it is compatible with your assistant before purchasing.
I hope you found some of these ideas interesting and helpful. Keep in mind this is written from the perspective of someone who is not yet a dad, but just preparing. My guess is when I write the follow up, it will go something like this: Everything was wrong, you are an idiot. But for now, it kept me busy and allowed me to feel part of the nesting process. Because let’s be honest, we all know the Star Wars rug I picked out will never see the light of day. If you have any additional tips and tricks, feel free to send em my way!