Dad's Post-it notes reveal his humourous approach to parenting

A parenting Post-it (Instagram/messagewithabottle)

A stay-at-home dad’s Post-it note habit helped him get through those early days of parenting—and eventually earned him online fame and a book deal.

After realising that daycare is super expensive, Chris Illuminati decided that instead of working to pay for child care, he would stay home with the kids himself. That was back in 2010, and at first his wife was a little nervous about the arrangement. On his website, Message with a Bottle, Illuminati recalls the first time she left him alone with their new baby.

“She reminded me, again and again, of all the duties I was to perform while she was gone. ‘I better write this down,’ I joked, and grabbed some post-it notes and a black Sharpie.”

And with that, a genre was born: the parenting Post-it. Illuminati leaves tongue-in-cheek observations about raising kids on coloured notes, photographs them and then posts them to Tumblr, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and on his website.

The notes aren’t necessarily super helpful, but they are amusing:


Illuminati shared his pithy one-liners for the better part of four years in relative obscurity before being noticed by a local blog. And like that, the dad Post-its took over the internet from here to Australia.

And as everyone knows, if you’ve got a hot parenting blog, a book deal is not far behind. The New Dad Dictionary was published in 2015, and along the way, Illuminati has never stopped posting.

In the last couple of days, the Post-it dad has caught fire again, thanks in large part to a segment on Good Morning America. Here are a few recent gems from his feed:

There are two important lessons to be learned here. One is that, when it comes to parenting, it helps to have a generous sense of humour. And two, Illuminati’s wife probably has a good chuckle cleaning up her husband’s never-ending trail of Post-it notes.