Stop Using Your Kids As An Excuse

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My wife and I discovered something after we had a child.  It’s really hard for us to ever hang out with anyone with kids.  Most of our friends are either single, or married without children.

Why is this?  Well, it’s pretty simple, we’ve found a lot of parents who use there kids as excuses of why they can’t do something.

As a parent now for 2 years I don’t understand this concept at all. My wife and I have a lot going on, between both of us working going to school full time, hitting the gym 5 times a week, plus my wife runs a non-profit, as well as her own business. This is aside from our blogging, e-books, and other projects we have going on.  Yes we are extremely busy, but we don’t know any other way.

So naturally we brought our child into the world expecting her to be a go getter.  And that she is.  When she knows we are going somewhere she runs and grabs her shoes, starts laughing hysterically and then proceeds to beat on the front door until we leave.  She loves to be on the go as much as her parents.  She is very used to going everywhere, she never meets a stranger, and has no fear of anything.

We love this, we want her to see by example how to live a full life.  As a dad it scares the crap out of me all the time when I hear crazy stories in the news, and I will probably be stalking her first boyfriend. But I want her to experience life, and experience it fully. I don’t want her to see her parents just wasting away time, watching TV and staying inside the house.  She is already learning this.

Kids are not an excuse not do things, they are all the more reason to do things.

I’m Back

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Back to normalcy.

It’s always bittersweet coming back from vacation, it’s always nice to get back to normal life and back in a routine, but it also sucks not being free to do whatever you want to in a day.

My wife and I got back yesterday from our cruise in the Caribbean. It was great to see our daughter again after a week away from her, and now the ten loads of laundry and grocery shopping begins.

We hit the ground running our first day back. College starts for both of us, back to work, meetings, and the like. Workouts were great on the cruise ship despite the small gym, the view made up for it.

I went unplugged for the week, naturally unplugged from phones and internet because on a cruise ship the price to get online could fund your own personal boat fund.

I love being connected with all of you digitally, but I will say I think we all need a break at least once a year from all forms of social media. It gives us a chance to refocus and renew, and that’s exactly what this vacation allowed us to do. This wasn’t the first cruise my wife and I went on. I think the thing we most like about it, is that we are completely free to come and go as we please. We are blessed with grandparents who watch our child for the week so we can be by ourselves.

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Free to laugh, to eat whenever we want, stay up however late, go to the gym whenever.

While vacation is awesome, the best thing about it, is getting time to reevaluate where you are in life, make new goals, new plans, new deadlines, so that you come back to life renewed, and ready to hit the pavement.

Vacation was amazing, and being back is equally so.

50 Shades of Hypocrisy

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First off let me just say that I really can’t stand Christians sometimes.  Yes I am one, but I still can’t stand them at times.  Unless you haven’t been on social media lately I’m sure you’ve heard something or another about the movie 50 Shades of Gray, when I first starting seeing all the controversy I hadn’t even heard of it, so knowing it was sensitive content I asked my wife to look it up and read me some articles about it.

One thing I will probably never understand is why “Christians” pick and choose what they are going to demonize and what they don’t.   No one is above sin, we all do really stupid and wrong things, I do them, and so does everyone else.  But admit to that.

So it baffles me when we watch dancing with the stars, family guy, or the latest bond movie that are filled with porn, and sexuality.  Now some might argue it’s not the same because it doesn’t take it to a certain level.  It’s like saying to your child, you can color on the wall with these markers but only 6 inches off the ground, any higher on the wall and you are in deep trouble.   It makes no sense.

I don’t understand why it’s such a “shocking” thing that movies and tv shows are continually getting worse…well it’s quite simple actually.  When you support shows, movies, or websites that show sex, talk about sex, demoralize fathers, and use women as objects…well it’s naturally going to progress into worse things.  People who make this content are seeing what brings in numbers and dollars, and frankly they are only producing what has been supported.

So please get off your high horse about banning “certain” movies while going to see others that are near as bad, you just like the other one so it’s okay.  Stop trying to get people to “like this page to show you don’t support something” while Iron Man makes out on your TV and you are posting a picture of some Hollywood hunk you think is hot.

As I said earlier, we all have our faults, our weaknesses, we all screw up, but stop trying to make it like you never do and people who do “this” or “that” or worse people.  We all have fallen short, and just because I or you haven’t done some certain thing doesn’t make us any better or worse than someone who has.

The Hard Days

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Have you ever had one of those days where you wish you could hide in bed all day? Sooner or later we all have one of those days.  We don’t really feel like going to work at the crack of dawn, we’re tired of our diet, or our exercise program.  We feel worn out, tired.

There’s one thing that really helps on days like this.  My wife and daughter.  Somehow they are more than enough motivation to be strong another day.  To work hard, to do my best to be honorable.

Sure that doesn’t mean every day I have it all together.  In fact rarely if ever is life all together.  Each day has its challenges, its hardships, its battles we must fight.

Don’t be afraid to be weak some days.  It happens.  Sometimes you do need to come home and take a nap, sometimes you do need a break and just rent a movie and chill with your friends, your loved one, or your spouse.

In fact it’s these simple pleasures that we find in those we love that make the hard days worth it.

Social Media Is Our New Girlfriend

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We have a tendency to lose ourselves in social media from time to time.  We forget that real life and real relationships are all around us.  We lose ourselves in trying to find out what all our friends have done today by reading their posts, rather than getting coffee with them.

We have a tendency to create our Facebook face, the parts that only the world can see, and hide all the parts we are ashamed of.  It’s easier, in a friendship you have to be real in order to maintain a strong friendship.  In social media you can be fake.

Sometimes we need to unplug.  When you come home after a long day work you don’t need to run to your laptop, you need to connect with your family, your significant other, or whoever you share your home with.

Don’t just post a status telling your friend you are thinking about them, call them up, set up a coffee date, go do something fun with them.

Social media has literally become like a girlfriend or boyfriend for many of us, and sadly at the expense of the important people in our life.

Social media is good, but don’t put it in a place it doesn’t belong.

Moved In

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I went MIA on Saturday due to moving, and then internet didn’t get hooked up until late this morning so my blog is late today.

Moving is always a challenge, but somehow it always gets done, and we managed to have every box unpacked by the next day.

I read something interesting this morning, it talked about how when someone approaches us on an area we haven’t been doing too good in, we tend to excuse why we exhibited that behavior, or action.  I am really guilty of this.

As soon as someone says you did, I tend to immediately come back with, “yes but…”, not a good response.  In truth some criticism can be good, especially if it comes from those who we know and trust.  Sometimes someone can simply ask why I did something, and rather than really think about the why, and see if maybe I have room for improvement, I just come up with my reason of why.

How much more can we grow if we don’t make excuses and really ask ourselves why.

 

Don’t Think You Are

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“Don’t think you are; know you are.” – Morpheus

There are so many times in our lives when we think we don’t know the answer to something when in reality we know all too well.  We think it is a hard decision, but we know deep in our gut what we should do. The problem is that we let others’ thoughts become our own.  We abandon what we feel what we know to be true deep within us for the act of pleasing someone else, or living up to society’s expectations.

And then we say we don’t know.  Of course we do!  We know exactly what we want, we know what desires lie deep within us, what cares and feeling we harbor.

The true questions we need to ask ourselves is are we going to put into action what we already know, or are we going to ignore it and pretend we don’t know, using that as an excuse to stay stagnant, or head the wrong direction.

Don’t think…know…after all, you already do know.

 

 

Believe in Yourself

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Often times when we set out to chase our dream it doesn’t always go as planned.  Not the actual chasing of your dream part, but the remarks and criticism of others.

Others will not believe in your dream.  They will call you crazy, say you are being unwise, say you are being irresponsible, and many more things.  Now I’m not saying everyone, I hope that your spouse or significant other encourages you to fulfill your dream.

Most of the time this stems from people being to insecure or to afraid to go after their own dreams and so they feel that no one should go after their dreams.

Now if you have responsibilities such as a family and need to provide for them, that may adjust how you need to pursue your dream, while still maintaining your responsibilities, but otherwise, go after your dream, no matter your age.  Find what makes you alive and do it.  That thing you’ve always talked about and have always wanted to do, why not do it?  You have one life.  Are you going to wake up one day and say “I’m glad I didn’t try.”?  Or are you going to have regrets if you at least don’t give it a shot.

So go out there and try.  And please ignore the naysayers, they are everywhere, they don’t understand your dream and they don’t have to.  Be you, and believe in yourself.

 

Seeing The Good

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My coffee simmers next to me, Mat Kearney fills the room. My daughter is sitting on the couch staring at me, still waking up with that sleepy look in her eyes.  I’ll be out the door and off to work in 15 minutes.  Some mornings I really hate going to work, not that the job is terrible, just there are more important things I would love to do.

I work a Tuesday through Saturday shift, and I never realized how much I would miss out on with Saturday mornings.  Yard sales, spending time with my family, pancakes.  It’s the simple things I feel are stolen from me.

I am grateful for the good though, thankful for my job, that I can provide for my family.  That I can see them be happy and do the things important to them.  It is worth it, even though on this particular Saturday I really want to walk around in my pj’s and eat pancakes instead.

The Problem Is Me?

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It’s easy to find fault in other people, after all we live in a tough world.  Everyone has a story to tell.  We all have demons from our past.  Things that have hurt us, made us weak, made look at the world through jaded glasses.  We all have missed out on certain elements that we needed in order to have a healthy life, but for one reason or another we didn’t get.

But there comes a point in our lives when we have to stop blaming our past, our pain, or our childhood, family, ex, or anything else for our lives not looking like what we want them to look like.

You have to take ownership of your problems.  Yes they may suck really bad, and yes they may not be totally your fault but the way you move forward is your responsibility, and you can get beyond your past.  You can hit your goals, hit your dreams, and have the life you’ve always wanted.

Start looking for ways to conquer your problems, not stay stuck in them.