But oh! How I depend on them, including the ones not pictured.
“The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other’s life,” says Richard Bach. “A happy family is but an earlier heaven,” adds George Bernard Shaw.
I’m grateful for mine.
Credit CC/Fred Mancosu
The below short story entitled “Birthday Cake” was written by my friend Josh Ray (under pseudonym) and published with his permission. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
I got a birthday. I suppose everybody does, and it comes around every year at the same time. That’s the way they do. Mine’s in November, but I don’t suppose that matters much one way or the other for this story. Anyway, I’m gonna tell you about two birthdays I had in particular. Continue reading…
Good summation of advice that certainly mirrors my independent research. #bookmark
My wife and I recently borrowed a large sum of money to buy a highly illiquid asset. To secure the loan, we disclosed more of our financial behavior to the bank than we’ve admitted to anyone else, including God. And rightfully so—again we were borrowing a large sum of money, and they wanted to make sure we’d pay it back.
In addition to scouring our personal finances, the lender took a fine tooth comb to our business finances. I’m self-employed. But my wife owns 50% of “the company.” I generate and service all the income. She gets half. Many would call her—as my lender often did—a “silent partner.” But she is anything but. Continue reading…
Saying “I love you” for the first time is always a crap shoot.
It’s easier to do when the other one says it first. Difficult to do when you’re the emotional, head-over-heals, and “want to lay it on the line” type like me.
That was the case when I first expressed my love to Lindsey. If I remember right, the conversation went something like this (probably after one of our legendary make-out sessions):
Me: “I love you.”
Lindsey: “Thank you.”
Crash and burn.
Not to worry, though. I was flying high again a few months later, after hot stuff reciprocated. And we lived happily ever after.
Thank you, Lindsey.
My dad won’t like me for repeating this on the intertubes, but it’s too good not to.
Growing up, my old man would regularly sneak off to his tiny toilet room to get away from his loud wife and six, know-it-all children. It was one of those “bathroom within a bathroom” type deals where the toilet had its own lockable door—you know, for added privacy and to keep the fumes from offending a significant other using the sinks, bath, or shower.
Funny thing is, that toilet room would have been claustrophobic for an undersized gnome. While sitting on the toilet, small children could have (and regularly did) touch opposing side walls with ease. It couldn’t have been longer than six feet.
Nevertheless, my dad would retreat there for what seemed like hours, reading Rand-McNally maps or whatever almanac or resource books he left in there. It was his sole sanctuary, that is until he took over the entire second floor after the kids left home.
As a stunning teenager, I remember thinking something like this: “Dude bought this big ole house and everything in it, and yet the only space he has to himself is a 6×3′ toilet room.”
Now, as the children have begun overrunning my own house, I have found myself in similar situations. Granted, I have it better than he did. I enjoy a private home office that is only occasionally open to the kids for impromptu dance sessions (since my desktop doubles as the house’s best hi-fi). And my “toilet room” is much larger than his.
But I still stay in the bathroom longer than I should. The only difference is instead of Rand-McNallys, an iPad comes with me.
(Note: I defer all flagging concerns to George Costanza)
Now can someone lend me a few thousand dollars so I can take up the hobby full time? Either that or let me impose on your Cape Cod, Maine, or Southern Florida timeshare?
Seriously though, Lindsey and I had a wonderful time and plan to go again sooon. It’s a perfect way to slow down your life.
Thanks, Bonneville Sailing.
While considering a TV upgrade, Lindsey and I were price checking a nearby retailer yesterday. Thankfully for us, the outfit was showing a kids movie, so parents could shop around.
Lindsey and I didn’t wait to take advantage. After a few minutes, I glanced towards the girls to find my four year-old looking the opposite direction, peeking through tiny fingers, and squirming in her skin as she watched a sci-fi movie on a different TV. I then rushed over to rescue her from the gnarly Alien surgery taking place on screen.
She was pretty upset. And I’m sad to say I didn’t notice the movie beforehand. (Was neck deep in materialism—not parenting— at the time, okay?) She cried when we got home. Her mother wisely recommended prayer. I offered. It helped.
This morning, it was Sadie’s turn to pray. “Please help me forget scary movies,” she supplicated.
Cutest. Prayer. Ever.
Like her daddy, I recently learned that my two-year old has a fetish for really good blues rock.
While listening to Band of Skulls on the way to St. George this weekend, Lindsey and Sadie weren’t as excited to hear the band. Meanwhile, I caught Maddie in a self-taught and deliberate headbang—she enjoyed it so much.
True to chain letter form, Lindsey emailed me the following “friend survey” today. With exception to nos. 23 and 41, her responses made me proud to call her my wife—especially with Valentine’s around the corner. They also make me look chivalrous, which is always a good thing.
Warning: some of her answers are a little sappy. But this is my blog—not yours. You can get lost if you have a problem with that! Continue reading…
In an effort to avoid having to finish her lunch yesterday, my four-year old casually lied to her mother, claiming to have had a headache and, therefore, would be unable to finish her meal. Playing along, my wife ask, “How long have you had it?”
“14 days,” came the reply. Upon hearing this from the adjacent room, I did a double take and replied, “That is one massive headache.” Laughter ensured. Kids Say the Darnedest Things now up to 16,470,002.
I got the new Punch-Out for Wii today and have been reveling in the nostolgia and reliving the combos required to beat each opponent. Currently I’m stuck on that frackin’ Great Tiger, who uses tricky teleportation punches to win. Cheater. My older brother Brooks was always better at this game. Where’s a good wing man when you need one?
Amid the great economic apocalypse of 2009, Lindsey and I sheepishly took an undeserved (as opposed to the popular “well-deserved”) vacation to Fort Lauderdale this month, while my mom watched the girls. It was the best trip I’ve had in a while, considering the stunning beach, lovely weather, great food, and cheap airfare and accommodations. We liked it so much, we plan on returning with the girls as soon as possible. Here are some of my favorite photos taken during our stay: Continue reading…
Lindsey and I gave few gifts for Christmas this year — virtually none to friends and family (gulp). I justified the stinginess given the imminent economic apocalypse.
Now, as the wee hours of Christmas are upon me, I feel like a grinch. Only I have no sleigh full of toys to return to double the size of my heart. Happy Holidays?
At least my three year-old is getting something.
While Lindsey and I (and PBS Kids) teach Sadie a boat load of stuff, I cherish the innocence she teaches me. I’m not sure how she came up with the following, but this is what she wants for Christmas:
- A pink flashlight
- A “key,” so she can pretend to unlock doors in our house.
That’s it. $15 of awesome.
This year felt a lot like last for me. I liked that.
That’s not to say thetr weren’t any life improvements — there most definitely were. But it did feel like business as usual with a few notable exceptions. Lindsey and I went on a lovely vacation to the Caribbean in February. Sadie started dance class and abandoned diapers over the summer (rad). Maddie started walking and her colorful personality has filled our house with 100% more smiles. We visited my parents home in Georgia for the first time in three years. And I started two new writing gigs.
In sum, here is what I am most thankful for this year: Continue reading…
Boston.com has published an interesting story surmising what a depression in the 21st century might be like. While the Great Depression and all its similarities to our current situation was very public, the New Depression (defined as a recession lasting a few years and unemployment upwards of 25%) will be very private, the article suggests, given the proliferation of the Internet to perform many daily duties including shopping, banking, entertainment, and communication. In short, author Drake Bennett expects long lines at the ER since people will drop their health insurance, a television boom since it’s the cheapest form of entertainment (movies and baseball were in the 30s, but not anymore), and barren suburbs due to crashing home values. Oh, and those shiny gadgets (bu-bye iPhones) will be traded in for reliable and durable tech like Nextel phones, and people will stop consuming organic food and other snobbery items because they’re too expensive.
Confession: We do not shut bathroom doors in our house while relieving ourselves, that is unless guests are over.
Lindsey and I inadvertently started the bad habit as newlyweds living in a small condo, wanting to maximize our conversation time. The practice has stuck, and often times one of use will even sit in the hallway to carry on a conversation, as if the other was merely sitting down as opposed to going to the bathroom. I guess we’re a modern day Adam’s Family.
Last week, I was making lunch for the girls while Sadie, our three-year old, dispensed u-boats in the guest bathroom toilet. As usual, the bathroom door was wide open so Sadie and I could talk should the “urge” arise. It didn’t take long.
Lindsey and I took the girls and our friends The Andersen’s on Friday to Jumping Jacks, an indoor playhouse with more than 6 dozen connected trampolines. I especially liked the warning sign: “Please jump in control. Don’t be stupid!”
I love taking jumps in life, so long as they’re “in control,” and I hate the consequences associated with being stupid. Definitely words to live by. A cute picture of Lindsey and the girls after the break…