Cowboys centre Justin O’Neil on fatherhood
COWBOYS star Justin O'Neill reckons he knows a thing or two about playing with dolls.
And it's a good thing because he and wife Chantelle recently welcomed a second daughter, Kasia, to the family.
"Yes my doll playing skills will be well and truly honed with our new baby," he said. "Giselle already has trained me up very well."
In fact the hands-on dad and budding architect is building his girls their dream two-storey dolls house.
"Giselle is already playing with the half-completed dolls house and I'm there right by her side," he said. "I love being a dad and I love that I have girls."
O'Neill said he was a skilled nappy changer.
"I not only do the fun dad stuff, although I do that well," he joked.
"I also do nappy changing, settling for bed routine and meal prep. It's all about helping Chantelle with the children as much as I can."
Justin's wife Chantelle said as one of three girls she had first-hand experience of the joy of growing up with sisters.
"My sisters were close in age as well and with Giselle two years old in September, Giselle and Kasia will be as well," she said. "The sister bond is strong and the support sisters give each is powerful. I love that my children will have that as well."
O'Neill said fatherhood had changed his perspective on life.
"It's very special being a parent and my family mean everything to me so I do think about life after football and what steps I need to take now to ensure I continue to provide for my family," he said.
"I'm studying architecture with the plan that one day, after footy, that will be my career."
And O'Neill is putting his design skills to use, crafting his children's nappy change table, as well as Giselle and Kasia's doll house.
"Everything I do now I do for the family and I am enjoying being a father the second time around," he said. "It is important to get that balance right between career and family.
"I think with a second baby parents acknowledge how fast the newborn and baby stages go. I just want to suck it all up and enjoy the ages my children are now."