What He Said (advice for new dads)

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Jeff was asked to send along some advice for our friend Peter, who is about to become a new dad.  His note was so great that I thought I should pass it along.  Whether you are a new dad, an old-pro dad, or somebody's favorite uncle, read and enjoy.  And have a great Father's Day! Dear Peter, Wow. Beth has given us a tall order.  Advice for a new dad.  My ADHD brain starts to fire on all cylinders.  After sifting through a bunch of practical stuff, I've got two slightly less practical … [Read more...]

A Time To Laugh: a Reflection on Christianity, Humor, and The Cosby Show

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I love The Cosby Show. Watching a familiar episode now is like eating comfort food on a cold, sad day. It never fails to bring a subtle nostalgic yearning for childhood and Thursday night ritual, comparing notes the next day at school. I smile at the phrases and words that reshaped the vocabulary of my generation—zerbert, obey-kabey, “push him out, shove him out, way out!” I also mourn the loss of innocence. At the risk of sounding like a prude, I wonder why things had to become shocking, … [Read more...]

Boys will be boys. What about mothers?

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Zach and Ezra ran in the house, panting, waving their water guns high in the air, and announcing triumphantly, "We got him! We got him!" When I could get them to calm down enough to tell me what they were talking about, they explained that they had taken their new guns to the end of our block to lie in wait for joggers.  After chasing and missing a few, they finally found one slow enough to soak with water.  Wasn't that just great, they wanted to know. It didn't seem so great to me, … [Read more...]

My Theology of Parenting or Why I Gave up Being God

BK (before kids) I met 2 women with vastly differing parenting styles, both of whom rooted their parenting in their beliefs about the nature of God and humankind—their theology. Donna emphasized God’s order and the sinfulness of humanity.  Therefore, providing babies with a structured environment including scheduled feeding, napping, and playing would corral their sinful natures.  The baby was not the center of the universe.  Instead the baby was a part (albeit an important part) of a … [Read more...]

Driving with My Daughter for the 1st Time

Lings had her learner’s permit for a whole 12 days.  I avoided driving with her the whole first week, when Scott took her out 3 times.  I resisted her pressuring me to let her drive during our trip to Chicago.  (“I’m 100% positive that it’s not in the rental car agreement to let an unlicensed 16 year old drive.”) But then Monday night, exactly a week from when Ling got her learner’s permit, Scott booted me out of the front seat of the van where I was waiting for us to drive to … [Read more...]

Regret–What a Waste

There’s nothing like a college reunion to raise a slew of emotions—and for me, amidst much joy, laughter and celebration, lay the bittersweet taint of regret. Last week, I took my daughter on our first college tour, and attended a reunion celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Northwestern University Graduate Christian Fellowship.  And while I enjoyed every bit of the whole process (other than developing some weird tendonitis on the top of my right foot from walking so much), regret … [Read more...]

Perfectionism CURED!

If you struggle with perfectionism like I do, come on over to Whole Mama and see how a paper I wrote at age eight spoke to me from my memento box. … [Read more...]

‘Little Angels’ Coupon

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Roma Downey will always be our favorite angel. A while back we featured the children’s DVD series she created titled LITTLE ANGELS.  Designed to help teach children their ABC’s, 123’s, they also introduce them to Bible stories. Roma Downey who starred in the hugely successful television show “Touched By An Angel” believes that introducing children to the Bible is one of the most important things a parent can do for their child. LITTLE ANGELS is available at all major retailers … [Read more...]

Bad Losers, Brother Brawls, and Perspective Taking

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On our first visit to the Museum of Fine Arts last year, our tour guide Jake asked the boys, "Do you know the three rules of an art museum?" Ezra responded quickly and exuberantly.  "No violence!" "Okay - four rules," Jake replied while laughing. I don't know what kind of kids Jake normally gets at the museum, but for my boys No Violence has to be at the top of the rule list.  They just can't keep their hands off of each other.  They sleep in a tangle of legs and arms many nights. … [Read more...]

Our First College Tour

On Saturday, my oldest child turned 16.  On Monday, she got her learner’s permit.  And yesterday, I walked with her all over my alma mater, Northwestern--our first ever college tour.  Today we look at University of Chicago. Whew!  Time flies when you’re having (or even not having) fun. As I’ve talked about this college trip at the end of her sophomore year, almost everyone (including my husband), says something like, “Wow, you’re starting early!” And of course, I suspect … [Read more...]