You may know Glenn Hawes as the father of Brolly Sheets and Independently You, but he is also the proud papa of Theo (21) and Lewis (19). With his empathic nature and sense of humour, he is a father figure of sorts to the Brolly Sheets team and customers alike. Here, he shares some thoughts on fatherhood and Father’s Day.

Do you and your family have any Father’s Day traditions? Do you have any plans for this year?

No real traditions – Diane used to see it as an opportunity for me to take the kids away from her, so I could have more quality time with the kids. Now that they are older, I expect that we will head out for brunch somewhere, so they don’t have to buy a gift. 

Now that your kids are grown, what do you like to do together as adults?

I like to play pool with them. A pool table is a great way to relax, and they are happy to chatter about their day whilst on the end of a cue.

We also have a weekly Sunday night dinner. Now they are independent, we don’t see as much of them during the week but every Sunday we all come together. If someone is out of town, then they Facetime in. Wherever anyone is, Sunday is family night.

What surprised you the most about fatherhood?

Just how stubborn they can be. They may be little, but they have strong beliefs. Plus, how different they both are from me. I love sports and am very competitive. Where they both participated in team sports, they played for the fun and joy of being part of the team. It was always great to be there, but as soon as the final whistle went, win or lose, it didn’t really matter.

You and your family lived abroad – USA and Australia – while your kids were young. Do you think these countries shaped your parenting style at all? Or are you pure Kiwi?

100% citizen of the planet. The kids were very small when we were in Australia and USA so we missed out on having familial support networks around. But I think you always fall back on the things that you remember from your own childhood. You try to do more of the things that you remember fondly and less of the things that you don’t look back on with any great joy. For example, my own father was convinced that my handwriting was terrible, so every evening he made me copy out passages from a compilation book of Barry Crump’s short stories. As a result, I try not to sweat the small stuff. I still to this day hate that book.

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