Ballard quits NFL for good…reasons

VIKINGS CHRISTIAN BALLARD

I read a great Man on the Run-type of story this week: Minnesota Vikings’ standout, Christian Ballard, just quit the NFL. A 24-year-old man living his childhood dream and making almost $700,000/yr. walked away from professional sports. Why? Other things mattered more. Ballard told USA TODAY Sports: “Making that much money—that was fun. But money is still a material thing. You can always make money. You can’t make that time you lose with your friends and your loved ones. Time is something that yo … [Read more...]

Helping Children Through National Tragedies

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“Did you hear that children my age probably died in that tornado today, Daddy?”Those were the first words out of my eight-year-old daughter’s mouth when I got home from work last night.I can’t imagine what it must be like to grow up in a day so filled with tragedy AND instant media coverage. When I was eight, I felt stressed about parent-teacher conferences, a bully at my school named Curtis, and selling Babe Ruth candy bars to raise money for my baseball team. My children are growing up … [Read more...]

Watching People Drown Themselves?

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“I know it’s wrong, but I can’t stop,” said a husband who had just admitted to me that he was having an affair. His wife was sitting next to him, holding a picture of their three children. When I asked the husband if he realized that he was flushing his life down the toilet, he paused for a moment, struck a pose akin to the thinking man, and replied, “It’s hard to explain…I just can’t stay away from her (mistress).”Why is it that we choose to do the things that destroy us? Take John Allem … [Read more...]

Clicking Parties and Other Milestones

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Our youngest daughter, Claire, has had a hard time learning to read. Our first two children took to books like honeybees to flowers, but their sister has had a harder time locating the nectar.Awhile back, my wife, Jamie, told Claire: “If you stick with it and work hard, there will come a time that reading will just click for you.”That statement ignited hope in Claire, and clearly stuck in her mind all day – that night before bed, she said, “Mom, I can’t wait for that clicking to happen. W … [Read more...]

5 Dumb Things I Did (Or Almost Did) In Past 10 Days

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1. Chased a mouse in my boot: On Monday night, I slipped on my Muck Boots to grab some wood for the fireplace. When I stepped into the garage, I heard a squeak. Another mouse, you’ve got to be kidding me, I thought. I went into hunt-mode, flipped on the light, and looked around. Nothing. I took a couple more steps toward the woodpile, and then heard another squeak. Forget the wood, I’m catching that thing! I got on my hands and knees and looked under the van, behind shelves, and around the tool b … [Read more...]

Dealing With The Holiday Blues

Lonely Santa girl

The holiday season seems to bring out the blue in all of us. I see it every year – shortly after Thanksgiving, and through the celebrations of the New Year, people struggle with a heaviness of heart. It’s virtually impossible to determine why. Yet, we try. Is it the solar index? Is it the bad news we’ve heard from doctors, family members, or employers? Or is it a failing relationship or unmet expectations for life? It’s hard to sort out sometimes. Whatever makes you blue, here are a few ideas to … [Read more...]


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