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A Typical Chat With Luke, My 3 Year Old

Dad: Luke, go get your shoes. It’s time to go to preschool.
Luke: ….
Dad: Luke, go – get – your – shoes.
Luke: ….
Dad: Luke!
Luke: Ming Ming is saving my dinosaur!
Dad: Luke, it’s not playtime, it’s school time. Please get your shoes.
Luke: I WILL!
Dad: You do not raise your voice to me! Now get your shoes or no computer time after school today. 5.. 4.. 3..
Luke: I AM!
Dad: Thank you. Now please put them on.
Luke: I can’t.
Dad: Yes you can.
Luke: No I can’t!
Dad: Yes you can Luke, you’re a big boy and I’ve seen you do it before.
Luke: No I need help you do it.
Dad: Come on Luke, we’re running late now.
Luke: No we aren’t.
Dad: Yes, we are now put your shoes on please.
Luke: NO – WE – AREN’T!
Dad: That’s it, no computer time today.
Luke: Noooooo! I’m doing it see I’m doing it!

Emma and Luke With Santa

Emma and Luke visited Santa at our usual place in downtown Chandler. The Lyon’s club sets this up every year and it’s such a great alternative to the mall. Very friendly volunteers and there’s never a long line. This year the kids are not shy or frightened of Santa. It’s fun watching them really get into Christmas this year.

10 Ways to Be a Better Dad: #1

Spend time with your kids. It’s the best way to show them your love. And it will keep you from going completely nuts every weeknight. My kids go crazy when I get home from work. They love being with dad. It’s not about what I can give them or do for them or teach them. What they want is simply my time, my attention.

I went through a period of time earlier in fatherhood when I lost my patience easily and felt annoyed by the constant interruptions and attention-seeking of my kids. These feelings were rooted in my unwillingness to sacrifice my time.

I am by nature a very selfish person and I realized that I was being a selfish dad. I made a decision to focus my attention on my son and daughter when I got home from work, putting all else aside until they were in bed. I found that I had patience with them and really enjoyed the time because they weren’t competing with my own agenda for attention.

I was being a better dad and I felt better around the kids. I think they felt better too and as a result there was less fighting and whining, more playing and laughing in the home.

First Dance with my Wife

First Dance

Getting married changed my life considerably. Learning to share life with my wife, from finances and family traditions to goals and ambitions, was sometimes a challenge. I was a bit slow getting out of the gate and resisted change. I recall attending a New Member meeting at a church we had joined. The group was discussing what religion each person grew up in. It was my turn.

“Lori grew up in the Southern Baptist tradition and my family belonged to a United Methodist church. So we really had to talk and come to a compromise when it came to choosing a new church.”

Our new church being a United Method Church, the pastor smiled and said, “You mean SHE compromised.” The whole group chuckled. I was slightly embarrassed. I hadn’t seen how my statements looked from the outside. I was so wrapped up in my own head.

That was many years ago. Now I’m a model husband. And modest to boot!