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Showing posts from January, 2019

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Daddy Dates

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Lately I've been having a little bit of alone time with one or the other of my daughters. I get so much time with them on a daily basis that it is easy to neglect singling one out for some more intentional attention. It's great! I've found that even normal things we do every day become more special when it is just the two of us; a new closeness is formed. I remember reading years ago that a key to successful fatherhood, particularly with daughters, is this alone time with each kid. Making this a routine is so important, because it develops a trust and openness between father and child that later on, when the stakes of certain decisions are higher, the relationship is established enough to make those decisions with parental guidance considered. I watched Ellie for almost two years before Waverly was born, and felt like I knew her incredibly well, even as just a baby/toddler. When you have two, that alone time kind of gets tossed to the side, more for logistical re

Talking with God

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I think the theme of this year is going to be prayer. On New Years Eve we were waiting for some friends to come over and, while trying to find a recording of the New York ball dropping, Katie clicked on a video of Francis Chan speaking about prayer. Though we were a few drinks into the night, it really struck me! Also, upon writing this, our church is doing a series on prayer , practicing the disciplines of it and letting it permeate your whole life. It's all a good way to start the year I'd say. -- Through the praise of children and infants you have established a stronghold against your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger. (Psalm 8:2) -- So in this journey my kids taught me a lesson about talking with God ( as they often do ). Sometimes a barrier to prayer is that we assume God knows what we want or what we are thinking; so why is it important to talk to him about it? There are plenty of answers to that, usually pointing towards talking to God anyway, but this m

Denial

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I'm the kind of person who always tries to find a reason for everything...traffic, a lackluster recipe, the existence of the universe. My wife assures me that everything doesn't have to have a reason, especially when it comes to why our kids may be upset or crying about something. "They must be tired," I reason, because if I can find a source for the issue, maybe I can find a solution. Whether she is right or not, I don't know (but she probably is ). So when it comes to difficulties in parenting -- and there are plenty -- it helps me get through when I can figure out why. Lately, we have been really struggling with the juxtaposition of our friends who don't have kids , with their routines and activities, against our largely at-home lifestyle with kids. Last weekend we went to a baby shower and noticed how the childless parents were enjoying long conversations with friends, eating leisurely, having a nice Saturday afternoon before their imminent date nights,

God Provides

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I realized today that I don't love surfing at El Porto . It's the most consistent spot in LA for the greater part of the year, but almost every session is harrowing in some way. Long paddle-out, powerful waves that often close out, standout sets that make your heart drop to your stomach -- it's rarely a nice, easy-going session at El Porto. But still, we keep returning, because sometimes this is the only surfable spot in Los Angeles. Today, I went and it was on the smaller side, but no exception in force and paddle-out length. Because of the size, I was riding the Wavestorm , which is almost impossible to duck dive well. And so, whenever a giant wave swamped me, I did what no surfer should ever do and ditched the board to dive under the wave. That's right: I broke one of the cardinal rules of surfing . To justify myself, I always took a good look behind me to make sure my board wouldn't hit anyone. So there. Taken after the 3-5 ft. session. If karma is y

Listen

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Kids aren't innate listeners, are they? I guess none of us are, which is why we read books and attend seminars on communication. Heck, I even have a Bachelor's degree in it...so I shouldn't be surprised when I tell my children something, and then a few moments later they have completely disregarded what I said. What sparked this is that I told my kids I was going to the bathroom, so they should just play by themselves for a little. A couple minutes later I heard them wandering around the apartment calling, "Daddy...Daddy...where are you?" Did I not  just tell them where I would be?  I thought to myself. I let them go for a little while until they figured it out, and then reminded them of where I said I would be. They appeared ignorant, so they either totally weren't listening, or are incredibly forgetful; or maybe some combination of the two. Either way, it is frustrating when someone isn't paying attention to you, right? (My wife can attest to that.)