On Father’s Day, it’s a tradition for kids to give dads gifts to honor the love and sacrifice that goes into being a parent. But, being a dad isn’t a skill that’s perfected on Day One, and as with any new job, pro tips from experts can help. This Father’s Day, Team Toyota dad-athletes on the Olympics and Paralympics roster offer their tried and true advice for those new at the game. These wise words are easier to wrap than a grill and take up less space than golf clubs. Thank you, dads of America!
Jarryd Wallace: U.S. Paralympian, Track & Field
First-time dad to baby Levi
Smile often. Your baby feeds off your energy.
Cook dinner. Mom is keeping a human alive, so you need to help keep her alive.
Babies are a lot like plants: When things go south, add water or sunshine.
Rico Roman: U.S. Paralympian, Sled Hockey
Dad to Juliet and Raul
I think the number one thing to remember is that kids are always watching and listening.
Listen to your children. Don’t be quick to get upset, especially if they are telling the truth. You want them to be open and honest with you.
Let them be kids. Allow them to be free to run around, and don’t make a big deal when they hurt themselves. If you stay calm when they get hurt, so will they.
Unconditional love. All the hugs. My mom is there for me to this day.
Learn from them and don’t be afraid to say you’re sorry.
David Boudia: U.S. Olympian, Diving
Dad to Dakoda, Mila and Knox
Invest in a set of wheels for that new precious cargo. Thanks to Toyota, my Toyota Tundra comes equipped with a safety package that will help keep me and my family safe on the road. Oh, and be open to your kid possibly naming your car after a character in ‘How to Train Your Dragon!’
Evan Strong: U.S. Paralympian, Snowboarding
Dad to Indie and Isla
Get creative with family night ideas! I turned my 2020 Toyota Sienna into the perfect space for a pizza and movie night, thanks to the Sienna’s entertainment center, and then a slumber party after an evening of stargazing. Indie gave our family night two greasy thumbs up!
Originally published June 18, 2020