Dadvice: Strive to be an awesome dad.

The desire has to be there before any action is likely to follow. The good news is, you’ve already got this one covered. After all, you’re reading an article on Parents.com telling you how to be an awesome dad. Chances are, you’re already a self-sacrificing, actively involved dad who loves to show off his kid’s snapshots on Facebook, even if they’re only sonograms.

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Dadvice: Set clear expectations and follow through consisten.

You won’t be able to enforce your expectations until your child is older, but the process will likely become one of the most enduring rules in parenting over time. One of your jobs as a dad is to protect and train your child, and even if it never really seems like it, kids crave structure. As your baby grows old enough to understand “yes” and “no,” make sure those words have meaning. Let your “yes” be yes and your “no” be no. Let your “I will” become “I did.” You’re not perfect, but now you’ve got a little adult watching you to see if the rules even matter.

Dadvice: Become the official photographer of your household.

Always keep your digital camera handy and snap a few shots of the baby every couple of days. Make it your job to create and be responsible for the baby’s photo database on the family computer or your laptop. Don’t worry about being a pro — there’s a reason they’re called snapshots. Every picture tells a story, so just imagine what a gifted storyteller you can easily become!

Dadvice: Relish in the positive, not the negative.

One of my biggest pet peeves is when I see a child complimented by a stranger in front of one of that child’s parents, and then I hear the parent sarcastically reply, “You want him? You can take him home with you if you want…” Guard your attitude toward parenting. Sure, there are annoying things, but being the kind of dad your kids will be proud to call their own means building up, not tearing down.