The reality star on being a dad to son Parker Jax
Interview by Claire Muffett-Reece
Parker’s now 10 months old! How’s life as a dad?
‘It’s the best thing ever and I absolutely love it. I am quite fortunate that I make a good living while being at home, so I get to spend a lot of time with Parker. It’s safe to say he’s my best friend!’
What’s he in to right now?
‘He is crawling, pulling himself up and causing mischief. His first word was “Dada” and it is still the only word he says, amongst other noises. In the morning, when my fiancée Becky brings him into our room, he crawls over to me in bed, climbs over my back and says, “Dada”. It makes my day.’
Is he sleeping through the night?
‘Yes, he does six hours, wakes for a feed, then sleeps for another six. We opted for the controlled crying technique, and by the fourth night we had it sorted. During the day he has a one-hour morning nap, then an hour-and-a-half nap in the afternoon. His night-time routine consists of naked time – him, not me! – before bath, bottle, story and bed. Becky and I take it in turns, as we both enjoy it.’
What’s he like with food?
‘He’s a proper little Italian and loves to eat! We went with baby-led weaning and are yet to come across a food he doesn’t like. His favourite things right now are tomatoes and cheese.’
What kind of parent are you?
‘I think Becky and myself are quite similar in that we are both laid-back with Parker, but if anything is wrong we’re equally as concerned. I think I’m quite a funny dad – Becky always says I’m the fun one anyway.’
What was your first trip abroad as a family like?
‘We went to Dubai then on to the Maldives for Becky’s 30th birthday when he was three months. The holiday was harder than we thought it would be. The first few nights we tried to venture out for dinner, as we naively thought Parker would just sleep in his pram. That definitely wasn’t the case! He was up, crying and wanting to see everything, which meant one of us would eat quickly while the other looked after him. After three nights of failed attempts to enjoy dinners out we stuck to the hotel buffet at 6pm. This meant we were back up in our room for 7pm, putting Parker to bed then watching a film. In the Maldives we also did a sunbathing relay of 30 minutes in the sun, before 30 minutes inside with Parker.’
When we last caught up with you we were photographing the two of you as you talked about your upcoming wedding! Since then Parker made an appearance and the wedding was put on hold. What’s the latest plans for tying the knot?
‘Our wedding is now taking place next year in Italy. It’s a smaller wedding, with just immediate family and close friends. Parker will be walking Becky down the aisle and giving her away. We love the fact that he will be at the wedding and play a big part in it.’
Read all about Mario’s baby buys for his son Parker Jax in the Autumn issue of Celebrity Secrets, available in OK! magazine bumper packs, on sale from this Tuesday for one week only!