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Mark McGrath’s Blog: Completing the Circle of Life

10/13/2010 at 09:00 AM ET

You may recognize his voice and presence on your TV screen, but our celebrity blogger Mark McGrath has a new role — dad.

The Sugar Ray frontman is proud papa to 5-month-old twins Lydon Edward and Hartley Grace, his children with fiancée Carin Kingsland, as well as the new host of Don’t Forget the Lyrics!, airing weekdays on VH1 and in syndication.

In his latest blog, McGrath, 42, recalls telling his father his and Carin’s great news — and how preparing for the twins’ baptism became his dad’s final family duty.

Mark, Lydon, director McG — the twins’ godfather — Hartley and Carin at the church – Courtesy Carin Kingsland

 

I can still remember the joy in my dad’s voice on September 3rd, 2009 when I told him Carin was pregnant. It was memorable because it was warm and fuzzy, but most importantly, it was vulnerable. The kind of vulnerability found in the uncontrollable joy that only children can mine out of the hardest individuals. Dad wasn’t necessarily hard, but he was definitely Irish — let’s just say giant bear hugs and “Up with People” musings did not dictate McGrath family gatherings!

My family happens to be mostly single, professional people more inclined to hear the din of the crowd during some bowl game than the pitter patter of little feet during the holiday season. At an early age, my sister Tracey had made it clear that she did not desire children, and I was too busy rockin’ the world, avoiding responsibility, and being selfishly involved in my own orbit to think about kids. So it’s safe to say that the last phone call my dad expected to get from 41-year-old me was that Carin was pregnant with twins.

Along with the profound joy, I could sense a real tangible feeling of pride in Dad’s voice as I rambled on about how excited we were about having twins. As I wrapped up the conversation, I think Dad realized he had an unexpected new role in life — that of a grandfather. The tone of his voice became a little more serious as he blurted out, “What about the baptism?”

Mark holding Lydon as he is baptized – Courtesy Carin Kingsland

 

Ah yes, the baptism … the Catholic ritual of washing for the rite of admission into the church. Now I was a little rusty in my practices of sanctity, so needless to say, the baptism was not the first thing on my mind. However, as I spoke more and more with my pop, I was beginning to realize it was definitely on his, so much so that it almost became his duty.

As the weeks went on, this “duty” was almost becoming annoying — he was obsessed with the logistics of the event! He even sent a baptismal outfit that had been worn by generations of McGraths. I didn’t even know it existed — shows you how much faith he had in me having children!

When the outfit did arrive, it became a source of contention between Carin and I, seeing as we were having twins. “Who cares if there’s only one and it looks like it was last worn by baby Liberace?!” I said. She only relented when my dad offered to pay for the whole affair — no small task due to Carin’s proclivity for the Four Seasons!

As the months passed, my dad began to lose a lot of weight and seemed to be getting weaker. A lifetime of smoking and being a charter member of the Rat Pack lifestyle was finally catching up to him. It was frustrating for all of us, for my dad had a real aversion to the bulls— bureaucracy of Western medicine, and any cajoling on our part would leave you excommunicated. Carin and I began to prepare ourselves for the worst, and we were so relieved to see Dad at the hospital for the twins’ delivery on April 29th.

Hartley, Carin, Lydon and Mark at the baptismal Mass – Courtesy Carin Kingsland

 

The birth of the twins completely softened my dad. To see him hold my son — his grandson — was one of those times when everything is perfect in the world. You don’t ruin the moment with words, but it is acknowledged in the spirit of the hierarchy and cycle of life. Though those were some of the best days I have ever had in my life, they were bittersweet, as beyond his brave face I could see that my dad was struggling.

July 18th, 2010 was one of those glorious summer days in southern California, and the breeze coming off Santa Monica beach gently soothed the throngs of parishioners at the St. Monica Catholic Church. The ceremony was perfect — Hartley and Lydon behaved like the little angels they are at their first formal gathering. My dad was so proud … the kind of pride a son gets from his dad maybe once or twice in a lifetime, if you’re lucky.

At the reception, surrounded by the love of family and friends, I caught a glimpse of my dad that will be forever etched in my memory. He had the most enlightened look on his face — a look of complete satisfaction and decompression that he had beaten the clock, that his job was done. The look of someone who had accomplished everything he needed to do in his life … and he did.

Edward T. McGrath passed away on August 7th, 2010.

Mark and his father at the reception – Courtesy Carin Kingsland

 

– Mark McGrath

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Showing 136 comments

Darlene on

That was a lovely story. It made me cry.

Lauren on

I hope Mark never leaves this blog. He is a really wonderful writer with a great gift for telling engaging stories. Easily the best blogger Moms & Babies has had so far, and having the dad’s perspective is so nice. Don’t go, Mark!

Samantha on

What a beautiful story, it truly touched my heart! It’s the moments in life when you’re holding a newborn baby or watching a loved one pass that you realize how truly precious life is.

Diane on

What a beautiful piece! I cried as I read it. Thank you, Mark, for sharing this time with us. I truly enjoy reading your blog.

Kel on

A beautiful story about family and love. I finished with tears in my eyes!

Anonymous on

thank you for sharing your story; my dad was just the same, only he was a hardened chicago cop. How awesome that you were able to see thru your dad’s bluster; babies are such an amazing way to reconnect with your parents.

good luck to you and your beautiful family!

Laura on

I agree! Mark’s blog is one that I fully enjoy reading because he does write so beautifully. He describes life with his children and partner with such warmth and sincerity of a real family man. His blog was an excellent addition to the “Moms” and Babies section. I hope he stays for a long while.

Leah on

I agree with Lauren – I love Mark’s entries. It’s funny, I have read all of the celeb mom’s blogs, but the person I identify the most with is Mark. I’m so happy for him and his family!

Angelina on

This was such a great and beautifull story. so emotional it brought tears to my eyes. the fact that Mark’s Dad got to see his grandchildren being baptised before his passing was special. Mark is a great blogger and hope to read much more!

Monica on

How beautiful! It’s always a blessing when loved ones are able to “hang on” long enough to see their life’s work completed. He’s looking down on his grandchildren and children with great pride I am sure.

Jennifer on

Mark, you are a beautiful writer and this was a beautiful story. Thank you for sharing it with us.

Valerie on

Please don’t ever stop writing your Blogs!

Shannon on

OMG what a beautiful story to share! Bless you and your family.

kay on

Thank you for sharing. That really moved me.

Vanessa on

I enjoyed this story, as well as the other blogs that Mark has posted! I also hopes he sticks around. :)

Marie on

Mark, you are blessed to have had your Father there. We just Christened our baby & both Grandfather’s have already passed, but thankfully both Grandmothers made it there. From one Irish O.C. person to another Mark, please keep your Blog going.

L.A. on

Thanks alot Mark…have me bawling at work :)

Shannon on

You are such a fantastic writer! Your story just draws me in the more I read your blogs. I think you have a calling to a career as a writer! I am so happy for you and your family that your father was able to see his grandchildren and to see them baptized.

mary on

What a lovely story.

Mark, not sure you will be reading these, but you are so very wrong. Your dad may not have shown how proud he was of you, a son. But I know in my heart and reading this story about his commitment to you and his grandchildren, I bet he was proud every day of his life from the first day you were born through his last breath. How can he not?

etsy on

I agree- of all the celeb mom blogs, I also identify with Mark the most! Keep writing, Mark!

tink1217 on

I have tears…Mark…you have found another calling in life…DAD!!! And…writer!! PLEASE continue to write even after this blog is through…I would buy your book in a heartbeat!! You and Carin are completely blessed!!!!!!! And I am sure your father is a guardian angel to those beautiful babies!

A on

It is so awesome to hear the McGrath family story from a male perspective. Please keep writing Mark !!

Christina on

What a heartwarming story!!

Krista on

What a touchingly beautiful story and a wonderful tribute to his dad.

Guest on

Very touching, I always look forward to Mark’s blog! There is a relatable quality in the way that he writes…all the best to the McGrath family!

Eliz on

I am completely in love with Mark’s blog, he is very talented at expressing his stories. As many have said I read this blog with tears in my eyes, but look forward to reading many more. :)

Donna Cobb on

Just goes to show you, there is a divine order to life. Mark I’ve always admired you, but never more than right now. Ur father is resting in peace smiling at what you wrote. It was so eloquent and so touching, I want to hold on to my loved ones forever

Jess on

This story was so touching. It made me teary-eyed at work :-)

T on

I get the ritual of Baptism and how it honors your Father! I was born Roman Catholic and my husband is Greek/Russian Orthodox, though neither of us are practicing, or for that matter believers. My parents have 8 other grandchildren all baptized RC but for my in-laws, ours are, and will be their only grandchildren. They are deeply religious so I made a very conscious decision to Baptize my children in the Orthodox faith.

We baptized my son in my MIL’s family’s Russian Orthodox Church and it was such a warm wonderful community feeling that I knew I made the right decision! She was SO proud on that day and we had the whole extended family there to celebrate with us.

My daughter we baptized in my FIL’s Greek church, as she is named after his mother. We had a very traditional Greek baptism and I did a lot of research to include all the traditional elements and it was beautiful. My FIL beamed from ear to ear with pride!

All to say, I have so many friends who hesitite to baptize their children because they are non-believers. For me, it was not about my beliefs but about culture and family and doing something that was so important for my in-laws. I look back and don’t see the religious aspect so much as a wonderful celebration of the lives of two children witnessed by our friends and families. Sometimes life is about so much more than it appears on the surface.

Thanks for sharing….

abbyreph on

What a beautiful story! Thank you for sharing!

Jessie on

What a tear-jerker!

I feel so much better now that I know I wasn’t the only one that finished this story in tears. I am currently just over two months pregnant and I wasn’t sure if it was the hormones talking! LOL It is plain to see that you are a beautiful writer Mark; with both heart-warming and compelling tales to share. It is very rare to hear a man describe in such compasionate depth, experiences that can make real people truly relate.

I am so happy for you and Carin! Congratulations on your beautiful babies, and YES – as asked by previous commentators, Please keep writing. I too, even after these blogs, would love to hear more from you on your parenting experiences. So sorry about the loss of your father. You can rest assured that he left this world honored to see HIS life’s greatest creations, continuing on into what will surely be YOUR life’s greatest creations. Lots of Blessings being sent your way!!

Janell on

I love this story. It made me cry. I also love the way he is so sensitive in the way he speaks of his family.

Josie on

Mark, What a beautiful blog. It was truly a blessing that your father got to see your beautiful twins. This touched me in a way that you can never imagine!

Emmy on

Mark, please cherish that you were able to share that moment with your father and your beautiful babies. There isn’t a day that goes by for me that I don’t look at my almost 1 year old girl and wish that my dad could’ve been here to see her. Thank you for this entry Mark, it was beautiful.

Sandy on

Heartbreaking AND beautiful. It’s nice that Mark’s father lived to see his grandchildren, and that he lived to see them baptized (something he seemed to want a lot) but so sad that he’s passed.

angela on

What a lovely story Mark! I was truly touched. Like many others have said, I hope you continue writing long after this blog is done. You have a beautiful way of sharing your life through your words. Your children are very blessed to have you as a dad, and I am sure your dad is smiling down on you as we speak :)

Jennifer on

This piece was so moving for me. It’s wonderful that your father got to see the birth of your beautiful children and their baptism. My own father passed when I was only 19 months old but it’s nice to think that though he was very young and we lost him way too soon, he got to see me come into the world and spent a little time with me. I love hearing your adventures in fatherhood and I look forward to this blog each week!

Amanda on

Wonderful story. He is the best blogger. So tired of the fluff pieces from others.

Christine on

With all the completely insignificant and trivial celebrity “news” stories we are bombarded with on a daily basis, THIS story was a lovely breath of fresh air.

What a beautiful moment in their lives. Thank you, for sharing this private and cherished moment with us.

Bancie1031 on

OH Mark! I’m soooooo sorry to hear about your dad passing away, unfortunately I know how you feel as I lost my mom August 18, 2010. It doesn’t matter if you know the end is coming near you can never prepare yourself for the passing of someone especially a parent! I am thankful (though not as thankful as you I know!) that he made it not only to meet Lydon and Hartley but to witness their baptism. I hope you have a lot of pictures to share with the twins as they get older not to mention stories and memories :) My heart goes out to you and your family for your lost.

Carin – Thank you for the beautiful pictures and allowing us to get to know your gorgeous family better :D

Lady on

Ah im at work crying like a little baby…this story was SO sweet…beautiful pictures Mark. I really love the way you write…keep it up daddy you & ur lady are blessed!!

Karla on

beautiful!!
crying at work… not good!

Andi on

Mark, I love your blog! We also had twins this year and life has been crazy, but wonderful! Thank you for sharing such a touching story about your Dad.

Bella on

As everyone else has said, this was such an amazingly touching, beautiful story. I don’t know if Mark reads these comments, but if you do, Mark you should write a book about this! The gift he has for storytelling and conveying the rollercoaster of emotions is amazing. I don’t think I’m alone in saying a book should be in the works!

Linda on

How beautiful that his dad was able to see his grandchildren baptized. My mother in law died on the 7th of May…the next evening on the 8th our granddaughter was born…everyone was in shock as we thought we were having another grandson. Great grandma must have known how sad we were so she told God to send a girl….Mark thank you for sharing such a wonderful moment…

Charlotte on

Such a sweet story. God bless.

CL

Kellie on

What a great blog! I love Mark and all his writings. I really hope he continues this tradition with People since Mark is so great at it. It gives us all a nice glimpse into his life with the twins and the rest of his family. I wish you, Mark, and all your family only the best in the world.

Jessica Bird on

Mark’s blog is without a doubt the best feature on here, keep these amazing stories coming. Tears in my eyes from your story, so touching. Thank you for sharing these personal moments, Mark!

Jim Dickinson on

Mark, you are one proud papa! It was my pleasure to share the occasional drink with your dad at the Ritz restaurant in NB. Whenever he spoke of you, he became so animated. The pride you feel in your twins is the same pride he had over you. Good luck!

DSL on

This is a great story, and thanks for sharing it Mark. Just wanted to point out that baptism is not a specifically Catholic tradition. I am a Presbyterian and Protestants baptize their kids too.

foxymama on

Mark tells the most wonderful stories. How gorgeous this is! I had the pleasure of working with him a few years back – he is a fantastic man and I imagine he is a terrific father. God Bless those babies Mark!

Kristi on

I really shouldn’t have read that right before I left for work! What a beautiful story

Robin on

It is not often that a blog brings tears to my eyes. This one of the most heartfelt and beautiful stories I have read. I know how Mark’s father felt because I have 4 grandchildren and it was important to me that they were baptized and now are attending Catholic school. I am sorry that he did not live long enough to see the twins grow up. Best of luck to Mark and Carin and their beautiful babies!

Julia Ortiz on

Mark, always remember these words written by you, which actually was what your father wanted to tell you, Son do not worry, Dad will be fine, now it’s your turn…

“He had the most enlightened look on his face — a look of complete satisfaction and decompression that he had beaten the clock, that his job was done. The look of someone who had accomplished everything he needed to do in his life … and he did.”

XOXO

mdmor on

Mark, Your Blog entries should come with a mascara alert because I cry every single time I read them! You are a gifted writer and storyteller and I’m so glad you let us take a peek into your family. God Bless your family. It is a wonderful thing to acknowledge your Dad like this and I know it will mean a lot to your kids one day. I hope you print out and save all of these in a book for your kids.

Linda on

Wonderful story enjoyed reading it.

I was 3 months pregnant with my son 31 years ago when my dad died and very young, so when my son was born we named him after my dad with the letter A cause we are jewish. I was raised both jewish and catholic my husband all jewish, but I was set against having a “bris” since I dont believe in them, yes there was an uproar with my in laws but this was our child, but we did find a rabbi to name my son in hebrew to sort of respect the in laws without having the pain included! So I know what he is talking about trying to make things right with parents.

The babies are adorable! and may his dad RIP!

Josie on

Oh goodness…I’m blinking back the tears.
Beautifully written.

PEOPLE MAG please take note…we want Mark to continue blogging!

Samantha on

My whole life, I swore that I would never, ever, get married in the Greek Orthodox Church; the Church I was raised in. I never liked it. I didn’t like the people there, the fact that it was in a language I didn’t understand, the traditions. As I got older, my religious beliefs became looser, and as an adult I am an agnostic. When I became engaged, the first thing my grandmother asked was if I would be married in the Greek Church. I said I would. I’ve never been close to my grandmother, and I don’t know why I agreed to it, but it just made her so happy. It was an impulsive decision. In preparation, my fiance had to get baptized Greek Orthodox, as he was not raised in any faith and had never been baptized.

Even though our wedding pleased my family, and it was a pleasant day for us, looking back, we know it wasn’t really our wedding. The wedding we had planned was a destination wedding, on the Greek island that my family came from; A non-religious wedding. With time, we became more and more upset that we didn’t take that route. So, when our daughter was born, a child that we knew would be our only child (I have a fertility defect, and knew my childbearing time was much shorter than most women), we refused to baptize her. It was easier to refuse this because, in our opinion, it shouldn’t be about us, or family, but about her. If she chooses to be baptized someday, then that’s great, but we couldn’t see choosing it for her. It didn’t seem right. Thankfully, the extended family is so caught up in their own lives that they hardly noticed, and my mother got over her disappointment quickly.

berta on

WAAAHHHHHH!! that was so touching, Mark be thankful for those memoriesI lost my mom last year and I cherish the memories and wish she could see a few more, but I know she is with me. Thanks for the heartfelt story.

Kate on

This story made me tear up. Thank you so much for sharing this… it really moved me. Wishing you and your family all the happiness in the world.

melissa on

Beautiful and touching story! :)

Tina on

What an amazing story Mark!!! I was brought to tears and appreciate you sharing this very intimate part of your life. I have been a fan of yours for a long time and look forward to reading your words every week. You are a wonderful man and an amazing father already and your babies are so lucky to have you!! May you and your family enjoy every minute of every day together! : )

Enid on

I agree with Lauren. Mark is an incredible writer.

It was a poignant and heartfelt tribute to his beloved father. Thank you, Mark, for sharing this memorable moment of your life with us. Blessings to you and your new family.

Kristine on

Mark,
I also hope you chose to write about life, parenthood, babies..one day..you are quite the talent and I’ve enjoyed reading the blog. Your story brought tears to my eyes…what pure joy your dad must have had in the final year of his life…a blessing you provided him. Again, thank you for sharing this personal part of your life with us…the world…your fans. Enjoy those babies every day. As a 41 yr old mother to a 22 month old..I know I do.

Karen on

I have tears in my eyes. I’m so glad Mr. McGrath lived to see his grandbabies and got to attend the baptism. What a blessing.

Scarlett on

This is a beautiful story!! For a Dad who lived long enough to see and hold his grandchildren!! Then to live long enough to see his grandchildren baptized!! I think that Mark and Carin have a precious memory to share with the twins when they grow up!! God Bless you both!!!

Kristen on

What a wonderful story. Keep ‘em coming.

KB on

OK – I’m pretty sure rock stars aren’t supposed to make me cry. But you did. So sweet. I know the most surprising thing to me about having my children hasn’t been the impact it had on me – I knew it would change my world forever. It was seeing the impact it has had on my parents. Seeing the way it’s transformed their lives. It was coming home one evening when they had babysat to find my father just standing there, staring at my sleeping son in his crib, with tears running down his face as he watched his tiny sleeping grandson. Transformative! I am so glad your father lived to see the twins birth and baptism. It’s a gift without measure.

Monica on

I love Mark’s blogs. He is really sharing his heart with us and it shows how similar we all are even if he is a rock star! :)

Thankfully,my parents were alive to see both of their grandchildren born. The first thing my mom asked about was the baptism too. It is a bonding of generations and friends that are family. It was an important day for all of us. I am so happy that Mark’s father was able to share this day with his grandchildren and children before he passed.

This is a wonderful story that Mark will be able to tell his kids when they are growing up when he talks about grandpa.

Congrats to Mark & Carin!

Suzanne on

Mark, you definitely have one of the best blogs on this site. It is so sweet to hear the father’s perspective on this, and you are an amazing writer. Thank you for taking the time to share such personal, beautiful, and detailed memories with us. :)

Sarah on

Wow, what a liberal Catholic Church. In the south you can’t get your baby baptised Catholic unless the parents are both married in the Catholic Church. I’m really surprised the dad was so concerned about the baptism more than he was of his own son not being married…

Tisha on

That was so beautiful to read, I know and understand completely what Mark was conveying….It made me sad and happy at the same time and was so tender. God Bless you and your family and may your family give you much joy.

Noel on

Thank you Mark for sharing with us. I have been a fan of yours for many years, and now as you begin your journey into fatherhood, I continue to be your fan and see you in a different light. Best wishes to you and Carin, and may your babies always be blessed with health and happiness. Enjoy every moment, and make lots and lots of videotapes. My son is 15 now, and sometimes I go to my room, and just watch my videos, wondering where the time went. Savor every moment….

robinepowell on

Awww, that was such a sad but great story. His father lived just long enough to not only see his grandchildren born, but also be baptised Catholic, just as many previous generations of McGraths were.

It’s times like those, that people realize how important their religion is to them.

Mary on

More tears! So happy that your father was able to share this experience with you and your family. Truly touching! Thank you Mark!

Rebecca on

I just hope takes his “baptismal promise” seriously in raising his children in the Catholic Church, which means attendance on all Sundays and days of obligation, family prayer, christian living,as well as truly providing a Catholic household and staying true to Church teachings, including going to regular confession, avoiding sin, being in a valid marriage or living separately and not sexually active, not using contraception and his Catholic parental responsibility: the religious and academic education of his children.

Baptism is a good start…..And when in doubt with priestly instruction, look it up in the Catholic Catechism. There are some priests out there, obviously, that go against official Church teachings.

Rose Javier on

Thank you Mark for the beautiful story of a parent and a grandparent. When one hits close to 40 and you have a family of your own, your own parents start making sense and you actually hear what they’ve been saying all along. Baptism is a gift and a sacrament from our God who loves us very much. That too unravels as you raise your children – it is always a source of strength and joy to invite our God to your relationship with your spouse – what a beautiful triangle indeed!
God bless you, your wife and your beautiful twins.,

Jada Gasol on

This is ridiulous…..I always end up crying my eyes out!!. Your stories are truly touching and englightening. It seems as though your dad was just waiting for that moment before he passed on and I am so happy you got to share that moment with him. Keep writing!!!

Jill on

I say the same thing every week, but I can’t help it…..I love love love Mark’s blog. By far, the best blog of any celebrity here so far. I come here every week, so excited to read it, not only because I can relate, but because I can feel Mark’s love and compassion in the story. I agree with the other posters that he should write a book. Oh, and I cry every single week I read it, but tears of joy and happiness. Can’t wait for the weeks to come and I hope that his blogs stay around for a VERY VERY long time!!!

Rojobahr on

I agree that Mr. McGrath is a very good writer. I have made a habit of catching his blog on a regular basis. I hope that he saves all of his entries so that he can gift his children with it when they are old enough to appreciate it.

Bravo! Thank you for honoring your father and making it clear that one can be both strong and sentimental as a man.

AAdams on

That was a beautiful story!! I named my son after both his granddads,but little did I know they would both be gone so soon after. I am sure your dad is watching over your two blessings from above.

Jill on

Rebecca,
I didn’t want to take away from the positivity that Mark deserves, so I am creating another little post.

I was raised in the Catholic Church alhough, I no longer attend, follow, etc. My family still does and one of the great things about all of the churches that they belong to (which is MANY….picture big Italian family) is that their God loves them and welcomes them to the church. Even though, they don’t go to church every Sunday, have family prayer, go to regular confession, avoid sin, being in a valid marriage or living separately and not sexually active, their God still loves them and welcomes them into the Catholic Church with open arms.

Angie on

CRAP MARK! I have mascara ALL OVER MY FACE now! Great, great blog. I can’t even begin to express how lovely your blogs are.

You’ve been by far the best blogger on this site! You’re an amazing storyteller.

Your father most likely continues to be proud of you.

deborah on

So glad to hear this story…and glad his dad made it long enough to see his grandchildren!

Congrats on your family Mark! Didn’t know what a great writer you are ;-)

Maria on

Mark,

What a moving story, you are a great writer don’t stop.

It’s stories like these that keep my faith strong and alive. Without the support of our fathers and mothers, no matter how tough they are on the outside, where would we be? It is their prayers and their vigilance that keep us strong and make us great and honest people.

God Bless you and you family.

May God grant, Edward McGrath, eternal rest in HIS peaceful arms.

The Mark Zeihen Family on

Dearest Mark and Carin,

My husband Mark and I had the honor of meeting your father years ago. At the time he was dating my sister in law. We were in Vegas and all met for dinner at Caesar’s Palace. We had such a wonderful time meeting and getting to know your dad. Christine went out of her way to get a picture of you and your band signed for each one of my children, (Mark and Lindsay). Would you believe we still have those pictures today….well preserved! Fast forward to September when Christine, my husband (Christine’s) twin and I celebrated our 50th’s in Phoenix. We met Susie at this time and gave her our condolences.

As a parent myself I can attest to your devotion and happiness to your family. My children are now 21 and 20 years old. Believe me, its like Kenny Chesney says….So dont blink….100 years goes faster than you think. Enjoy your special moments, I know your Dad is looking down and is so very proud. With love, The Mark Zeihen Family

Jenny on

Oh, geez, I didn’t expect to totally tear up at this. Thank you for sharing, Mark–it was wonderful.

katerih on

Beautiful! Mark, I am so glad you were able to share that event with your father. Your family is lovely. Blessings to all of you…

Ashley on

Wow. Thank you for sharing that. What a beautiful, heart-touching piece of writing. Sorry for the loss of your father.

leanne on

Dear Mark,

I am so sorry for the loss of your father and so happy for you and your wife at the arrival of your twins. I too have shared in the infertility journey and am now blessed with a daughter and a newborn son. I want to thank you for sharing your family’s story so eloquently.

A note to celebrity babies…please limit your celebrity blogs to meaningful entries like the McGrath’s story and leave out the self centered, egotistical hogwash (ie Bethanny Frtankel).

Sincerely,

The Bishops

THERESA on

What a great story. Mark is a beautiful writer. I was at work and had to leave my desk cause I was crying.Thank you for sharing your story with us.

ninalue on

“I just hope takes his “baptismal promise” seriously in raising his children in the Catholic Church, which means attendance on all Sundays and days of obligation, family prayer, christian living,as well as truly providing a Catholic household and staying true to Church teachings, including going to regular confession, avoiding sin, being in a valid marriage or living separately and not sexually active, not using contraception and his Catholic parental responsibility: the religious and academic education of his children.”

This intrusive, invasive, Gestapo-like list is exactly why the Church is losing so many followers.

All the best to you, Mark :)

Elisa on

Wow, what a beautful story! This really touched my heart, almost to tears. More so, as the same scenario happened to my cousin. She and her boyfriend Chris had just baptised their baby girl on a saturday, and then he was tragically killed in a motorcycle accident the following Thursday. Its amazing how God’s will works. But it was nice to see him have a good time, and I will never forget the proud papa smile he had on his face that day (Sat). It goes to say, time is precious and you just never know how much time you have here.

what of it? on

What a wonderful tribute to your dad. Thank you for sharing.

Mary on

Ah, Mark, as the saying goes, once a Catholic, always a Catholic! It is a wonderful thing to give your kids the gift of faith. There is no doubt your dad is watching over your babies…I will bet at times you are not sure what they are looking at, smiling at, and reacting to…for sure it is their Grandpa from above!

I love how you are so authentic in your writing-fatherhood has hit you in all the right places-it is such a revelation, isn’t it? :) I say get yourself a publisher, because you have a true talent for writing what you know, from the heart, and there are many dads out there who could use an honest, guy’s perspective on parenthood and being in a relationship with children, and many women who would appreciate knowing what a guy is thinking about these topics as well.

I am so glad your dad got to see what a wonderful and loving father his boy is! What a gift to see, and also to know you live on in your grandchildren. Keep writing, Mark, and God’s blessings to you, Carin and those beautiful babies!

carmen on

I thought the passage i had written at my fathers passing about my life journey with dad said almost everything about silent love. I knew when my dad passed he had finished his life although i would have loved just a little more time with him…upon reading Marks blog of his father and their journey to the end I almost feel connected to these men whom I don’t even know and will probably never meet…thank you Mark for sharing your father and his love for not only his grandchildren but also for you….i feel honored!

Kristen on

Each of Mark’s blogs have made me cry. He has a beautiful way with words and this was a beautiful piece to read.

Beautee on

This is a beautiful story and of course I cried. = )

Shannon on

PLEASE write a book! You have such a way with words!

Emily on

Mark has been BY FAR my favorite celebrity blogger on this site. The honesty that comes in his writing is so refreshing.

When my mother in law was pregnant with my husband, my father in law’s dad passed away. My kids are SO BLESSED to have all their grandparents. My mother in law now has dementia so we know her time with us is not as long as we would hope but we cherish every minute.

peanutscbrule on

Nice blog. Mark is quite articulate!

sophie on

Mark you are an excellent writer and I also finished the story of your sons’ baptism in tears. What a lovely memory of your father that you can someday share with your sons.

Frances on

Thank you Mark for sharing this beautiful story. <3

Anonymous on

wow.. talk about what a gift you have….. reading every word , i feel what you and carin are feeling….. you truly have a way with words….
i hope you continue to express yourself through writing……
your friend always..

Michele on

This blog was beautifully written and completely heartbreaking at the same time. I, too, understand first hand the circle of life. My mother passed away when I was six months pregnant with my son. I was so glad that I had decided on finding out his gender before he was born because she knew that she was having a grandson and even told me to tell my son that she loved him.

Such a strange time that was in my life…terrible grief and pain mixed in with pure joy and happiness, every range of emotion you can possibly feel. Thanks for sharing this with your readers.

Talar on

Mark, I owe some belated thanks to both you and Tracey for sharing your dad with me (his tough love and all). My own father died almost exactly 4 years earlier on August 10, 2006 in Lebanon and your dad took it upon himself to give me the tough love that only a father can give. So, when your dad met my soon-to-be-husband for the first time at the Quiet Woman, it was not an easy encounter. Your dad grilled my fiance and if I didn’t know any better, I would think that it was my own father sitting across the table from us, asking my fiance about his intentions with me! I was really looking forward to seeing your dad at my wedding in 3 weeks but it appears that God had a better event for him to attend. I’m sure he’s up there somewhere with my dad, letting him know that I’m in good hands down here.

I’m so glad that your dad stayed long enough to meet his grand-babies. I had never seen him so starry-eyed and excited. Once they were born, he appeared to be a man who had just fallen in love for the first time.

He’s left a lot of fans behind and I’m proud to say that I’m among them. I hope that you keep on writing as I would so much appreciate the opportunity to keep a part of him alive with me through you and your beautiful family.

Love, Talar

suzanne on

What a beautiful and heart rending story, I had a falling out with my dad 5 years before he died and nothing I did budged him from not speaking to me, he missed out on my son’s birth, my son was 3 1/2 when my dad died and he never got to see, play or talk to him which absolutely broke my heart so I am happy that Mark has such beautiful memories of his dad with his newborn babies, it brought tears to my eyes.

Sun on

Oh my goodness, what a touching story! I am so glad that you had that chance to be with your Dad while you yourself became a Dad. Though he’s passed on, you’ll have some very special memories of him with you and his grandchildren. So poignant…I’m going to go and have a good cry now!

Jeanine on

That was such a lovely piece. Spoken like a proud papa and a loving son. I am glad that your father was able to see his grandson and granddaughter born. My own grandmother never really met her first great-grandson when he was 6 months old (her mental functions were starting to diminish). She knew that I was pregnant with my second child a couple of years later. Unfortunately, she passed away two weeks before my daughter was born and I never was able to tell her about her second grandson two years after my daughter. May you enjoy the life and love of your father thru your son and daughter, Mark!

Mindy Cooper on

Mark, I am soo sorry about your dad, that was a very touching story. Congratulations on your twins. I watch you every nite on Don’t Forget the lyrics. I would love to be on it someday to meet you. Best of luck to you and your family.

Stacey on

Very touching story! Thank you for sharing it with us Mark!

Em on

Wow that is soooo beautiful. Bittersweet that your Dad isn’t here with you now, but so touching and beautiful that he experienced the joy of being a Grandfather and planning that special day – the Baptism.

Your children are beautiful!!!
Em
from Australia

Tiffany on

As I was reading this blog, it made me think of my grandmother. When I was about a year old, my grandmother had a heart attack. My dad’s family thought that she was going to die. Her wish was for me and my cousin to be baptized. We were a year old, so that wasn’t a problem. My grandmother died 26 years later.

For grandparents to want to have their grandchildren baptized is an honor. Some parents don’t believe in it. I am glad that Mark and Carin went through the baptism. They may have not wanted to at first but, since it meant so much to Mark’s dad, they went with it. I hope that Mark and Carin realize how special it was for Mark’s father. (I’m sure that they do.)

Mark is a wonderful father. I hope that he continues to write his adventures of parenthood for People.com. If not, please put you adventures of parenthood on your website. It is so nice to know that a rocker can be so cool and genuine about parenting.

saint on

Beautiful! Cherish the memory. My mom never got to meet any of her grandchildren. The McGrath-Kingsland family are lucky to have even a few of those special moments. As an aside, Mark is a great writer–a well-told, heartfelt glimpse into their lives.

Lily on

I grew up adoring Mark McGrath! I just love reading his blogs each week. I now 27 am trying to start a family and so far its been rough and very emotional. I get hope from reading your blogs because they’re real not full of bs. Keep it up Mark ,your an awesome writer. And congrats on your little miracles!!!

Sorry for the loss of your father. Losing a parent is never easy. I lost my mom 4 years ago. Cherish your memories of him, they can give you peace :)

Teg'smommy on

This made me cry! My dad died 7 months before my daughter was born. He was my best friend so to not have him there for her birth was very hard. My daughter is 2 now and I feel his spirit in her every day. I am sure as the time goes Mark and Carin will see Mark’s father in those kids as well or at least I hope they do because it is a comfort to me to know my dad’s spirit lives on through my daughter.

Baby G Mom on

I’ve been enjoying your blogs immensely! It is so wonderful to get a Dad’s perspective and this one was so touching and sweet and made me cry! Your father will always be watching over your beautiful family and smiling!

Ami on

Mark, what a wonderful story! Thank you for sharing and God Bless your family!

Karen D on

It is so beautiful. thanks for your blog. I love to read those stories. For so many years that I dream of, My dad finally moves in with us, with his 2 grandkids. I feel blessed. I treasure every single day with him. My dad doesn’t have much time either…

SarahJane on

Beautifully refreshing and heartwarming story.

However, I will not be reading any more of Mark’s blogs at work!
:::sniffle sniffle:::

Cynthia on

Great story. Sorry to hear about your dad.

Eileen on

Mark-You are a beautful writer! Reading your story makes a person want to stop and smell the roses in life. Enjoy your beautiful children and remember, through your faith, your Dad will always be with you and your family…

Lydia on

Beautiful story!!

Aine on

What an absolutely beautiful story. Your Dad must be very proud of you indeed.

Michelle on

Beautiful post Mark, thank you for sharing. You’re such a talented writer. What precious moments you had with your Dad as he embraced the role of Grandpa, such an amazing time of reconnection for you both. So sorry to hear of his passing x

melissa seitzinger on

Keep up the great writing … i am a self proclaimed music moron but, Mark you are wonderful with words. keep up the great work one day they might even pay you for it :) love reading.

Jess on

Thank you for sharing that beautiful event in your life. I never post comments on anything, but your post moved me. I also have twins (boy/girl) that are now 3 months old. Our happiest times with them are the ones we share with family and the pride that our parents and grandparents show. I know that I will not have my grandparents forever so I savor every minute they have with our babies. I am so glad to hear your father met his grandchildren and that you will have that memmory with you forever. Congrats on the twins. As we know, it’s a lot of work, but when you see that first smile it’s just amazing. All the best to you and Carin.

Jen on

Your blogs are so beautiful, Mark! I’m sorry for the loss of your father, but I’m sure he’s smiling wherever he is :) You should consider writing a book! I’d be first in line!

Candice on

Beautiful. I cried like a little girl.

Joanna on

Love reading Mark’s stories about his babies. What a beautiful story and I’m sure your dad is watching over your little ones daily.

Tee on

Dang, way to make a girl cry! What a beautiful story, Mark. Thank you so much for sharing it with us. I’m so happy that your father was able to be with his grandchildren for such a special occasion.

Shannon on

Mark is a great writer. He and Carin are so sharing with these details and the pictures. What a lovely family.

Lola on

great writer!!!

jen miller on

i have tears of sadness and joy from the reading of your blog.

i just found out about your dads passing from susie and i’m overwhelmed. ed was soo funny,bold,and set in his unique, strong lifestyle. he and frank had their old school way about them that was unique and just them. i’m happy for you all that he was able to share in your new generation together..your dad had funny stories that cracked us up at a dinner. i just know he and frank found the only out-door patio in heaven to sit at…bless himm. i’m glad to have had him pass my way for a brief moment and that he made my friend so loved.

jen

ESPPP on

HONESTLY I CRIED WHEN I READ THIS, MADE ME THINK OF MY DAD

Tom Myers on

Mark,

I went back to the 50th reunion of Sacred Heart High School in October. I was saddened not to see you dad there. We used to walk to school together down Wolcott Street, from grade school through high school. He was a good man. May he rest in peace.

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