1. Why don't you start by introducing yourself to our readers (Name, Kids (How Many / Names), Occupation, Location?)
First of all thank you so much for including me on this list. It's wonderful to be a part of something so awesome and be surrounded with some other really awesome dads. My name is Hank and I live in a wonderful small town in Arizona with my beautiful wife Danielle and our son Henry. We currently only have one little guy but we definitely plan on having more.
2. When does "the Holiday Season" start for you?
The Holiday Season starts right around Thanksgiving for us. We starting checking our tree and light supplies and get out our big boxes of decorations from the garage. We usually put up the tree in December but starting next year we are going all out on Thanksgiving weekend, especially now that Henry is really getting into it.
3. What do you and your family do to keep the magic of Christmas alive?
Since having Henry it's been so fun to keep the magic alive! His excitement makes it so easy. This year has been the best so far. We took him to the Polar Express just a few weeks ago and that was one of those moments that makes you remember what being a parent is all about. The joy on his face the entire time was priceless. The lights, the train, Santa- he was on sensation overload and he was loving every moment of it. When Santa came on the train and passed out silver bells to all the kids, his face lit up with the hugest grin. As he gets older I can only imagine all the awesome stuff we will be able to do with him. The Polar Express is definitely going to become a yearly tradition in our house.
4. What's your favorite holiday movie?
My favorite Holiday movie easily has to be Home Alone. To me, it's timeless and classic. So far I've watched it twice since Thanksgiving and I know we plan on watching it again before Christmas. Thankfully this also happens to be one of Danielle's favorites too so it works out well! A very close second is National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. I think that movie is also a major classic.
5. Is there anything you always wanted for Christmas as a child and never got?
There's really only one thing that stands out in my mind. It had to be when I was around 9 there were these really awesome Spider-Man toys. They were these small play sets that had a comic book cover but opened into a little action seen. Nothing huge but my mind was blown when I saw them. I was lucky enough to get one from my grandparents that year but I really wanted the whole set. Haven't been able to track them down as an adult but I'm sure I'll find them at Comic Con one of these years.
6. Holiday Tree or Christmas Tree: Real of fake? Discuss.
I assume that most folks here in Arizona get fake trees. With how dry it gets here, even in the winter keeping a tree from getting too dry is fairly difficult. I remember having a real tree a few times when I was a kid and I remember my parents getting so frustrated with them drying up and getting everywhere. Once decent fake trees started showing up I remember we switched. I must also admit it's really nice to pull the pieces out of the box and it's ready to go with lights. Then we still get to decorate it, which was especially fun this year. Henry wanted to do it all on his own. Danielle and I sat and watched him decorate until it was perfect, and he spent about an hour and a half placing the ornaments.
7. Do you have any unique holiday traditions?
Yes, we have a ton! Our small town is all about Christmas, so every year we go the Courthouse lighting, stroll downtown, and do all of our yearly holiday stuff. We do a really fun thing with Danielle's family were everyone has to wear their special Christmas PJs on Christmas Eve. I look at being a dad as giving me that opportunity to really create lasting traditions with our kids, and like I said up above, the Polar Express will definitely become a yearly tradition.
8. I know that you like collecting vinyl: both music and toys. Is there anything in particular in your collection that you are looking forward to holding onto and passing to Henry? Also, who has more toys, you or Henry?
I think I definitely give Henry some competition with our toy collections. I only see two options down the road, 1) he's going to be so stoked about my record and toy collection and will be excited about whatever I pass along to him or 2) he's going to think I'm a total dork. I really hope it's option one. I have so many prized Star Wars toys that I hope I can pass to him. Plus from the many trips to San Diego Comic Con, I have a few gifts from friends that will be given to him once he's old enough. I have also saved one version of almost every shirt that both Life In Pictures and Hour of the Wolf (my previous bands) have made. So he's going to have a really awesome shirt collection as soon as he can fit into a size small.