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Dad does home work

Molly Shore

Robert Taylor does not bring home the bacon. He cooks it.

When Taylor’s family celebrates Father’s Day on Sunday at his

favorite camping spot along the Colorado River, they will pay homage

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to a dad who chose a different career path two years ago.

After 21 years of working for an electronics security company, and

just as he was being considered for a vice presidency, Taylor, 41,

quit to stay at home and raise his daughters, Alyson, 9, and Sara, 3.

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“After [Sept. 11], I really took stock in family values,” Taylor

said. “I was at the top of the ladder, but my wife still had plenty

more rungs to go, so I decided to step down and let her pursue her

career.”

While his wife, Dena, 36, works as an area sales manager for a

washroom accessories manufacturer, Taylor begins his day preparing

breakfast for the girls and getting Alyson ready for school. She is a

fourth-grader at Bret Harte Elementary School.

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Once he sees Alyson safely off to school, Taylor begins his

morning chores.

“Usually about that time, laundry kicks in,” Taylor said. “Since

there are three girls in the house, it takes forever.”

Alyson is happy to have her dad at home.

“He helps me with my math homework, and I’m doing better,” Alyson

said. “He always helps me get the right answer.”

Once a week, Taylor and Sara attend a Toddler and Me class and a

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toddler dance class.

“I actually danced in the Spring Fling on the stage with Sara,” he

said.

When the Bret Harte PTA meeting is called to order, Taylor is

there.

“We don’t have many dads active with PTA, but he’s extremely

active,” Principal Diane Berger said.

Taylor’s participation at the meetings adds a welcome male

perspective to the group, Berger added.

In the beginning, Dena Taylor said making the change was tough for

her husband because it was not a traditional male role.

“One of the difficult things is that most of the time when a woman

says, ‘I’m quitting my job to stay home,’ it’s like [she is] moving

up to something,” Dena Taylor said. “But when a man says that, it’s

like [he is] stepping down.”

But Dena Taylor, who has worked throughout her marriage, said her

husband does a job she could never do.

“My daughters will never know a world where a man makes the money

and the mom cooks the meal,” she said. “We’re raising a different

breed of children.”


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