Posts Tagged ‘raising children’

The Search Continues

July 20, 2010

“Think carefully, you only get to spend your money once.”

This is advice that I gave to my children when they were young.  To begin with they got an allowance and they were allowed to spend it however they wanted to spend it.  Then when they were sixteen they got part-time jobs.  Again they were allowed to spend their money however they wanted to spend it, but we no longer gave them money.  We provided a place to live, food to eat and some basic clothes.  They had their own money for gas, entertainment and stuff.

You only get to spend it once.

We are currently in the market for a black leather studio couch.  It has been hard to find.  We are also looking for a travel trailer.  We have specific ideas about what we are looking for and it has not been easy.  At times it has been discouraging but we hold off on our purchase because we too, can only spend our money once.

Do you wait for what you want, or settle for what you can find easily?

There are many things in life that we have to choose.  How we spend our money and our time, are important decisions.  Sometimes we have to choose quickly.  Sometimes we can afford to wait.

Choose wisely.

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Making Memories

April 13, 2010

As my children were growing up, when we were heading out to do some sort of activity with the boys, especially if Gloria was not going with us, she would say to me “Remember, you’re making memories.”.

That comment would always make me think about my actions.  I would like to say that those memories are all good, but, I’ve been known to have a temper, even been called grumpy a time or two.  Gloria’s comment to me would make me think about how the day would be remembered, and I would try a little harder to make good memories.  I would try a little harder to be patient.  This took effort on my part if things were not going smoothly.

I would encourage each of you with the same thought.  Remember that you are making memories each time your family gets together.  Try to make them good memories.  This does not have to apply only to families, but to other areas of life as well. 

Make some good memories today.

empty nest

October 12, 2009

Both of my sons are now in Minnesota. 

Andrew left Saturday with his truck packed to capacity with the things that he was taking with him as he starts his new life in Minnesota.  He is going to be living in a log cabin, on a lake north of the twin cities.  He is very excited about starting the next stage of his life.

My wife and I are not quite so excited.

Don’t get me wrong,  we are very happy for him and believe that he is ready and capable, and that this is how it is supposed to be.

Except that, maybe a little closer to home would have been nice.

Of course we should be glad, he had wanted to join the military, and then talked about the border patrol, so I guess we should be happy that he is only one state away.

At any rate, we are now empty nesters.  This really started to hit me about a week before Andrew left.  The impact was truly felt on Saturday as he drove away.  Our big old house, where our children grew up is going to be very quiet, and seems pretty empty.

Sigh….

The transition might not be smooth, but I believe that each stage of life brings its own challenges and rewards.  I believe that God is good to his people and that our lives can be filled with blessings that come from God.

Our little blessings have grown up and moved on. 

I am certain that God’s blessings will continue in our life.

They will just be different.

Advice to Fathers

June 18, 2009

I enjoy seeing young families out doing stuff together.  It brings back fond memories of my own years raising my boys.  My boys are young adults now, which doesn’t mean that I am completely finished as a father, but the job description definitely changes.

For you fathers whose children are still at home, I would like to give a little unsolicited advice.

PLAY

Take the time to play with your children.  Do age appropriate activities.  Have fun.  Do things with them that they enjoy.  Share your own interests with them.  (However, pay attention.  Play time is about them, not about you. )  You don’t have to spend a lot of money, but you do need to spend some time doing fun things with them.

SAY

Take the time to talk with your children about whatever they are willing to talk about.  This is true at all ages, but especially important during the teen years.  During the teen years, your child may be unwilling to talk most of the time.  On those occasions when they want to talk, you had better take the time to listen.  ( Even if it is late at night!) Shut off the TV.  Turn away from the computer.  When a teen wants to talk, it is important to listen.  These talks are not about you giving them a lecture,it is about you being willing to listen to what they have to say.  Then you can have your say.

PRAY

Included in this category are all of the spiritual aspects.  You should pray with your children regularly.  When they are young, you should read them Bible stories.  As they grow older, you should model an appropriate devotional life and encourage them to follow your example of prayer, Bible study, and church attendance.

STAY

Your love for your children should be unconditional.  That means that whatever they do, whatever success they achieve or whatever collosal mistakes they make, they should know that you love them.  You should tell them that regularly, and demonstrate it by your actions.  Be a presence in their lives.

Stay, also applies to your marriage.  Make it work.  Work on making it.  Divorce is devastating on children at any age.  Never give up.  Marriage is supposed to last for a lifetime, but it takes time and effort.  It is worth it. 

This is not a comprehensive list, but rather a list of essentials.  Fathers, your family needs you.  They need you to love them, care for them and be involved with them.  It is not just about providing the material needs.

They need you.