Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Summer Wind

I think my kids have had a fun summer. We've been to lakes, beaches, fairs and parks. We've played games, watched movies, kayaked and hiked. The kids have been to several camps and toured museums. It's been quite a whirlwind. I can't believe that it's almost over.

This summer has been pretty special for me since it's the first one I've had with the kids as a stay at home dad. It's been the 3 of us all day every day. Most days that's been a great thing - other days I've prayed for September to come quickly. What it hasn't been is boring.

So what am I going to do with myself when they go back to school in a few weeks? Maybe it's time to get working on that novel my wife keeps pushing me to write. That would beat the heck out of dusting and vacuuming.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

You Give America...not Love... a Bad Name

When Charles Barkley famously said: "I am not a role model," he clearly was addressing the fact that parents, teachers and guardians should be role models for kids - not athletes and rock stars. But what do you do when your Dad decides that this is the t-shirt he's gonna go with while chaperoning you to the local summer carnival? I guess start idolizing Lady Gaga or someone. "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happy Hour." Really? Last I checked the right to beer nuts and chicken wings weren't in the Declaration of Independence.

I spotted this pillar of the community while I was on the ferris wheel with my daughter. I'm going out on a limb here but I don't think he subscribes to The Economist. This chap was with his two young children wearing this advertisement for alcoholism. C'mon man. You're better than this. Is this the message you want to send to your kids (who were also on the ride by the way) and the public at large? Our founding fathers risked it all to set up a new republic so that we could all drink cheap beer at 4:00 on a Wednesday? Kids are sponges my man. They see and hear everything. You could be a Rhodes Scholar for all I know but with that get-up you might as well be wearing a dunce cap. How can we have high expectations for our kids if we don't expect more from ourselves?

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Anarchy in the U.S.

Never mind, here's the Sex Pistols, originally uploaded by jenX5.

Sorry for my absence faithful readers but I have been otherwise detained. We've been busy hosting our great friends and their three beautiful kids visiting from England. It was great but it showed me what having five little ones under one roof is like. In a word - ACTIVE. I may have forgotten how much energy 2 year olds have. And I never realized how much 4 and 5 year old girls argue. We actually had an incident at the beach where the two girls actually argued over rocks. They're quite plentiful here ladies. Enough for everyone! Meanwhile the 7 year old boys were busy unearthing fossilized dinosaur poop from the lake bed (or so they thought). Boys are like dogs, girls like cats. That's as simple as I can put it.

Despite the kid's bickering a good time was had by all. It was great to reconnect with our wonderful friends and have some adult conversation time. I was reminded during their visit about what a gift it is to have real, true friends. They used to live up the road from us in our old town but moved back to the U.K. shortly before we relocated. It was strange but it felt like some of our family had moved away. They were always over - for dinners, family birthdays, holidays. When they left I thought "You can't leave. You're part of our clan."

So now every time we meet a new couple my wife and I ask each other - "Are these are new best friends?" Sadly the answer has been no. But maybe that's OK. I hear the weather in England in November is lovely. Perhaps we plan a visit....