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Father's Day

June 21, 2015

Daddies are going to save the world!

Happy Father’s Day! I am late posting this because I was celebrating. It was a great day spent with the best gift God ever gave me, my husband, and the man who gave me life.

I love you, Dad.

On Mother’s Day I declared, “Everyday is Mother’s Day!” Today, I wonder does our culture celebrate fathers? Do we? In the whacked out world we live in, one might wonder if fathers really matter. Television shows for years have portrayed fathers as lazy, inept fools. They are men who drop into their favorite chairs at night to demand a can of beer and a clear view of the TV set. They usually are monosyllabic and the butt of every joke. They are poor fathers, bad employees, and all around worthless individuals.

Many articles at this point would offer a disclaimer that fathers who are abusive do not deserve respect. I fully acknowledge that abuse, addiction, and family dysfunction are real problems that plague the family. I challenge the notion that we cannot speak of the biblical role of the father in families without detailing every reason not to respect him. If we succumb to this impediment, I believe we have little hope for growing in God’s Truth and Grace. Every person is created in the image and the likeness of God and God has a plan for each one of us, including men.

A lack of respect for fathers, I believe, is at the root of many problems facing the family, communities, churches and the world but I have trust that men will regain their positions in our families, faith, and yes, I believe they will save the world. Are you interested in helping?

My goals to empower the men in my life, to show them the respect and love they deserve and require a behavioral change on my part:

Value Fathers as the Spiritual Leader of the Family - Just as Joseph was the head of the Holy Family, the daddy in your family deserves the respect of his wife and children as the head of the home. Encourage him in his faith and grant him the respect he deserves in guiding the family when praying, saying grace, or at church.

Allow Men to be Men – Encourage their desire to support and protect their families. Express gratitude for the actions they take, the living they make, and their position as head of the household.

Support his Role in the Family - Encourage strong relationships between men and other members of the family. Foster communication between the men in your life and their parents, siblings, and children. Avoid managing these relationships and especially demeaning men in their relationship with others.

Watch your “No”s and “But”s – Be aware of how many times you contradict them, especially in public. In the course of a story, do you add information? Become aware of the times those insertions begin with the words “no” and “but”. Encourage and allow men to tell their stories without added commentary or contradiction.

Thank Them – Express authentic gratitude for their hard work, sacrifice, and service.

Saint Joseph signifies the importance God the Father places on earthly fathers. If we consistently elevate our attitude, manners, and treatment of the men in our lives, we will see the glory that comes when men who are loved and respected. We will see the blessings that God intended for our families.

Trust in God’s word,

“Honor your father and mother. This is the first commandment with a

promise, that it may go well with you and that

you may have a long life on earth.”

Ephesian 6:2-3

June 19, 2015

Back to Boring

It was a busy day, like the day before, like the week before, like the month before.

My 3 year old was riding patiently in the back seat, strapped in like usual, not knowing if she was in for a twenty minute kid pick-up or longer.

Then she said it. Clear as day,

"When are we gonna get back to boring?"

Ouch, that one hurt. It pierced me, even today. She asks it every day in small ways that are non-verbal but register in my head. You see, today was a busy day, like the day before, and the week before, and the month before . .

"When are we gonna get back to boring?"

The difference is that I am asking myself the question. Asking it a lot.

The decisions I make effect my family. When I say yes to projects, events, obligations, I am saying "no" to them. They are so good to put up with me. The worst part is they move on with their lives as I continue to be busy.

The best time to control my "busy"ness is Lent. (Yep, that’s over.) I say to people that I have given up saying "yes" for Lent. Their reaction is … well, it’s not good. How can one give up serving, give up one’s time, give up saying yes and be pleased about it? It sounds selfish, and it is. You see, Lent occurs right before my busiest months April and May. If I give up saying “yes” in February and March, my family benefits. The very busy months that follows contain only what must be there.

The problem this year was that I didn’t give up saying yes for Lent. The result has been horrible. Horrible and compounded by issues beyond my control which resulted in a little one, wise beyond her years, reminding me that it doesn’t have to be this way.

"When are we gonna get back to boring?"

So what am I going to do? I am going to declare it Lent today and in the spirit of sacrifice, I am going to say "no". I AM GOING TO SAY NO and say "yes" to those I love the most, those who need me the most, those I miss the most, and those who love me the most.

If I need to be reminded, these little voices will certainly remind me. They speak a hard reality.

For example - Tonight, I hollered out to my little son, “I love you!”

He smiled at me from play and answered back.

“I love you too! Drive Carefully!”

He was expecting me to leave. I wasn’t leaving but I am listening.

The Great Sock Race!

June 1st, 2015

The Great Sock Race!

I love sorting. If you need help, ask me to sort stuff. I love to sort my sister’s kindergarten felt pieces. I love to return fisher price people to their proper abode. I love to sort. One exception - I hate sorting socks.

I have often made bad jokes, some good, about sorting socks in purgatory. I have declared for years that at my funeral “In lieu of flowers, please bring odd socks.” I can imagine my friends depositing their mismatched friends into my open casket and leaving the service little happier knowing they would never see those persistent stray socks again.

It’s been busy at my house lately. Ok, that’s not true – It’s been insane. We are starting to “ show our seams” as Grandma Chris would say. The lack of sorted socks is not the only deficiency or the most important difficulty but on Friday I finally decided to deal with this issue, which meant announcing the “Great Sock Race!”

Step One - The way the adventure begins is to have almost (that’s so funny, almost) all the laundry done. This step is essential, impossible, but essential.

Step Two - Line my orphan socks out on my king sized bed.

Step Three – Initiate THE CHALLENGE. Call all the kids together and announce that the winner who collects the most socks wins! It’s mostly bragging rights and whatever cash I have in my purse which was $3 which didn’t seem very “prizey” so I borrowed $2 bucks from my son and viola! The prize was a $5!

Step Four – Remember the rules. No stealing from Moma’s room, that’s cheating, but anywhere else in the house is fair game.

Yell “Go!” and the game is afoot!

Fifteen minutes later the result is:

Team #1 = 114 socks (The Winner)

Team #2 = 82 sock (Solo Player, and a good showing)

Grand Total = 224 Socks in 15 MINUTES!

Step Five - Tell everyone to quit arguing.

Step Six - The socks have to be washed because, well . . . because they are dirty and I am not smelling those socks.

Final Step - Sort the socks.

Final tally = 188 pairs of clean socks.

Sounds impressive but remember with 18 bare feet in the house that’s about two weeks of clean socks.

The silver lining - summer is almost here and flip flops will save the day!

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