Creating a Safe HAVEN For Your Family

I don’t know if it’s because 40 is rapidly approaching, or if it’s because I’m watching my children grow up, but I have been thinking about the future lately. Specifically, I’ve been thinking a lot about how my family will fare if/when I’m not here someday.

It’s funny, but life insurance never seems to come up when you’re “planning for the future.” When you’re in college, planning for the future means finding a job; maybe buying a home and starting a family. When you have that family and home, planning for the future means college for your kids, and retirement down the road. Life insurance never seems to come up in the conversation. Why?
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Nobody Likes Flakes

I’ve become somewhat of a stickler in my old age. Long gone are the care free days of waking up at the crack of noon, making open-ended plans with all my friends, knowing the odds were more likely I would end up lounging around on my couch playing video games than following through with any of those plans. You know, life pre marriage/kids.

But now, I’ve done a complete 180. If you make plans with me, you better stick to them! Not only that, if you’re not 15 minutes early; you’re already late.

I know, it probably sounds like I’m in constant Drill Sergeant mode, and I am. Time spent in ¬†the military, then marrying a woman who always says, “I’ll be ready in 5 minutes” in 10 minute increments for 30 minutes, when I’m ready to go, and then having 2 adorable, yet highly annoying (at times) kids, will do that to a person.
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Progress is When We #ClimbOut Together

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On Saturday June 18, 2016, I had the honor of taking part in one of the most amazing events I will probably every witness in my lifetime. From the outside it probably appeared to be a simple gathering of moms, ranging from pregnant to trying to corral a toddler or 2. Probably something you’ve seen every day in malls, parks and playgrounds alike. But, it was so much more.

My wife, who many of you know runs the page MamaChakra, recently became a Warrior Mom Ambassador for Postpartum Progress. With this title came the responsibility of putting together and organizing the yearly #ClimbOut of Darkness event for our area of Alexandria, VA.
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#GuardYourYard From the Invading Forces of Summer – DynaTrap Sponsored Post

No matter where you live in the U.S., certain things are just synonymous with summer – hot days, swimming pools, and grilling every chance you get.

When my wife and I purchased our home 3 years ago, the backyard was less than appealing:
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To Be a Dad is to Be Flawed, and Loved

I’ve talked before how I wasn’t ever sure I wanted to have kids of my own. I was content in being selfish. I enjoyed not having any major responsibilities, outside of paying my rent, and having enough money to go hang out with my friends after the bills were paid.

Even after I started dating my wife; we would go on winery tours or weekend-long trips to Vegas at a moment’s notice like we didn’t have a care in the world. Because we didn’t. Then this funny thing happens. You get married, you start taking life a little more seriously; you start settling down, and naturally the conversation of having kids comes up. Even then, I wasn’t sure I wanted kids.
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The Funniest Stuff I Saw on the Internet This Week 5/27/16 – Papa Does Preach

Friday is upon us once again. And after a long grueling week of work, dealing with whiny coworkers and jerk drivers; a long weekend with our equally whiny/jerk kids. So for all the parents out there hating life at their desks, and dreading going home, here is some funnies to get you through the day. You’re welcome!

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The Funniest Stuff I Saw on the Internet This Week 5/13/16 – Papa Does Preach

Well, we’ve made it through another grueling week of work, bills, life, and worst of all, kids. So, if you’re anything like me, 1) I’m sorry, but more importantly, 2) you need a good laugh right now…and probably a drink or 5, but mostly a laugh.

So here are the the things that made me laugh this week…between bouts of sobbing because because, parenting:
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Why I Must Apologize to My Son, For Doing The Right Thing.

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I’m not altogether sure I was cut out to be a parent.

Well, it’s too late now! And besides, you’re doing a great job.

That was part of a conversation the Wife and I had recently. I’m not breaking any news when I say that being a parent is probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done, with marriage being a close second.

Every-day-parenting is filled with it’s up and downs; highs and lows, and some days if definitely can feel like this little person who you’re trying so hard to raise and protect, and nurture, is doing everything possible to work against you. Yet, we parents continue on.

Sure, I give my kid a lot of shit on social media (and trust me, it’s well earned), and even here on the blog every once in a while, but for as much as I joke and talk about how much he annoys me, I have no issue pulling back the curtain and admitting that other than my wife, my son is the single most important person in my life, and I would do anything to protect him. That’s why something that happen earlier this week made me feel like I failed at that, and that I need to apologize.

Let me start this off by saying, I recognize kids are jerks. They’re jerks to their parents, and they’re certainly jerks to each other. In a weird way, that’s their job; to be assholes. That’s where we parents come in. When the jerk-behavior isn’t being directed at us (albeit the minority of the time), we’re supposed to be there to teach them how they should treat others, and communicate their feelings. But does that mean we have to stop them from not liking other people, or saying as much?

No, of course not, and as much as I love my kid, I know not everyone; certainly not ever other kid, is going to feel the same way about him that I do. And that’s what we faced earlier this week.

Ferris and I arrived at pre-school this past Tuesday, like any other day. Except this day was special for him; he was able to wear his brand new shoes that light up when he stomped his feet. I’m not going to go into how many times he stomped his feet that morning, because that would be a post in itself.

As we crossed the parking lot to school another one of Ferris’ classmates arrived, so of course he had to tell/show him his shoes. Along with the other boy was his mother, and older brother, who last year also attended the pre-school. As Ferris excitedly showed the boy his shoes the two boy gabbed only the way 4yos can about such trivial thing. I was lost in their adolescent excitement, but it didn’t last long.

As I was enjoying the moment I was abruptly pulled back to reality by hearing the older brother say to his mom, “That boy, Ferris is not a nice person. He’s mean to kids. I don’t like him.” I tried to brush it off, even when the boy repeated it to his mother. As I said, I get it, kids are kids. But the boy didn’t stop there, he continued the whole walk into school repeating some variation or another of his statement to his mother, with little to no effort on her part to try and discourage him from saying things like that.

I try very hard not to judge other parents. We have it hard enough, and no parent truly understands another parent’s struggle, because each kid is unique in how they act. Like tiny little snowflakes of terror. But I had had enough. As I expressed to my Wife when I told her what happened, even with the mean shit that kid was saying, I wasn’t mad at him. I was mad at the mom for showing no effort in stopping her son. Hell, for all I know, this isn’t the first time this conversation has happened, and maybe the mom agrees. But what I do know is that I was now pushed past my limit of acceptance of someone insulting my son.

I finally turned and looked at them both and said…nothing. I uttered not a word to either the older boy, or his mother; however, I fairly certain the look on my face probably said a thousand words, and she read every single one of them. I simply patted my son on the back, who was (thankfully) still lost in his excitement with the other boy, that he was oblivious to everything just said about him, and directed him to his classroom.

My son went about his day none the wiser to what happened that morning, and for that I am thankful. Me on the other hand? Well, I felt, and continue to feel like a huge failure. I vowed a long time ago I would never let anyone hurt my children the way I was hurt as child; not by physical or verbal abuse. I feel like I failed him that day. And before you say that it’s ok, because he didn’t hear what the other kid said; to me, that doesn’t matter, because I heard it, and I did nothing.

Then again, there is another side to all this. Maybe I did do something. Maybe I chose to break the cycle of anger that has plagued me from my youth. Maybe I chose to be the bigger person. Maybe I taught my son a valuable lesson in dealing with those who choose to insult you (even if he doesn’t know it). Maybe I did the right thing.