Philadelphia Dad Tracks His Baby’s Growth with Philly Cheesesteaks, Becomes Internet Hero

The options for documenting your baby’s growth are endless. Some parents create adorable chalkboard signs to hang over their baby’s head for a picture. Others use apps to write in details like height, weight, likes (food and pooping) and dislikes (sleep and diaper changes) onto the image.

I was never that fancy (or maybe it’s just laziness), but I usually jotted down a few stats on a piece of construction paper and laid it next to my kids, and snapped a pic. That was about it. (I like to keep the bar low around here.) But here’s an idea — if you’re raising your baby in Philadelphia, why not toss those charts out the window and just put a cheesesteak next to him?

That’s exactly what first-time dad Brad Williams did — and the Internet is loving him for it. The idea, Williams recently shared with People, happened by chance.

Image Source: Brad Williams

“My wife and I ordered take-out one night when Lucas was 2 weeks old,” he said. “I quickly realized my son was about the same size as my cheesesteak, so I took a picture and posted it on Facebook.”

The 37-year old dad and and founder of WebDevStudios.com never thought his joke would get so much attention. But since everyone loves cheesesteaks just about as much as they love babies, it did.

Image Source: Brad Williams

When Williams saw how much everyone loved his “Cheesesteak for Scale” idea, he ran with it, documenting his son’s growth with side-by-side baby/cheesesteak photos on his blog, StrangeWork. However, William’s son Lucas (like all babies) turned into a toddler eventually. And like all toddlers, he started refusing to cooperate with the cheesesteak tradition.

In fact, Williams tells Babble that one of the downfalls of his fun project is that he may have turned his son off to cheesesteaks entirely.

“He’s grown to dislike cheesesteaks,” Williams says. “I think mainly because he associates them with being on his back. That’s one of the reasons I quit taking the picture after the first year because he was starting to not enjoy it. I’m sure when he gets older he’ll begin to love cheesesteaks again!”

Image Source: Brad Williams

Williams — who is still very much a major fan of the popular Philly food — tells Babble that his favorite cheesesteak is the “Whiz Wit.” So you can bet that’ll be the first one he introduces little Lucas to, once he can get past his cheesesteak aversion.

Lucas also now knows that Dad may not stop with just cheesesteaks. Knowing how much fun it is to measure him with various delicious food items, Williams and his wife April took the opportunity to branch out their tradition in Paris this past summer.

“The ‘for Scale’ thing has become a fun joke with friends and family,” he tells Babble, “so naturally when we visited Paris over the summer we had to take a Baguette for Scale picture!”


I envision a future coffee table book of Lucas’s “for scale” images next to various sandwiches from around the globe … College tuition = paid!

Image Source: Brad Williams

Thanks for the laughs, Brad and April. (As well as the alternative ideas on how to chart our babies’ growth.) Also, now I’m hungry … I’ll be sure to try that Whiz Wit next time I’m in Philly!

Image Source: Brad Williams

For more laughs, track Lucas’s month-by-month growth over on StrangeWork.

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