36 Moms @ the Pool

Gracious, I was just at the pool this afternoon and oh wow. Mamas, there are so many “kinds” of us. SOOOOOOOOO many.

So, let me just list a few as we head into this water-filled summer because I’m tellin’ ya… after this post, you’re gonna be lookin’ for all these mamas at your local pool and addin’ to the list.

There are the moms who…

  1. Have designated themselves as the real lifeguard.
  2. Bring half the grocery store with them.
  3. Pack the stroller, pack-n-play, inflatable napper-thing, and all of Wal-Mart’s pool noodles.
  4. Thought the pool was hosting a photo shoot for the cover of SwimSuit Illustrated.
  5. Bring avocadoes and knives for snack time.
  6. Did their hair before they came.
  7. Give free, unsolicited swimming advice.
  8. Conduct their own swimming lessons in the middle of the pool.
  9. Are dressed for a private, European beach.
  10. Seem afraid of their children getting wet.
  11. Use the kiddie pool as their free, three month subscription to e-Harmony.
  12. Forgot the sunscreen.
  13. Use a bottle of sunscreen per hour.
  14. Are possibly sippin’ somethin’ other than water out of that bottle.
  15. Are wearing a pair of LuLaroe leggings…in the water.
  16. Still believe white t-shirts act as camouflage when they’re wet.
  17. Allow their child to eat a 6-inch sub while swimming.
  18. Are playing “shark” in the middle of the 18 inch- deep pool.
  19. Spent more money on their suit than I did on my family membership pass.
  20. Forgot they brought kids to the pool.
  21. Are terrified of their husbands drowning their children.
  22. Are nursing in the pool.
  23. Bribe their kids with 50 cents to try the slide.
  24. Appear to have reached the color of “red-hot lava.”
  25. Forgot that everyone was listening to their pool-side phone conversation.
  26. Bring their color-coded pens and their summer calendar to get some serious planning done.
  27. Are attempting to discreetly explain to their small child why another woman has her breasts almost entirely exposed in the splash pad.
  28. Are doling out slices of Velveeta like its her job.
  29. Are mercilessly dunking their child to expose them to their water fears.
  30. Are sportin’ a pair of jeans and sippin’ a latte…and NOT sweating.
  31. Continuously yell, “I’m tellin’ your dad when we get home!!!”
  32. Just dropped 30 bucks on “Walking Tacos,” Corn Dogs, ice pops, and RC Colas at the concession stand.
  33. Are swimming laps with their small child adhered to their back.
  34. Are trying to keep their mascara from running.
  35. Brought three, different types of flotation devices. Just in case.
  36. Brought Cheetos with no wipes.

Mamas, we so diverse. SOOOOOO diverse!

Confession: I may or may not be #1, #5, #8, #23, #27, and #36. MAYbe.

 

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Mom: 30 Thank You Notes

Kids, if you were to write me some “thank you” notes (Jimmy Fallon style) here is how I envision they might read.

  1. Dear Mom, thank you for keeping me alive.
  2. Dear Mom, thank you for consistently getting up in the middle of your dinner  to wipe my bum in the very nasty public bathrooms.
  3. Dear Mom, thank you for washing clean clothes that were never dirty. Not even a little.
  4. Dear Mom, thank you for finding everything I thought I lost but was really right in front of my face.
  5. Dear Mom, thank you for insisting that I not ingest mold.
  6. Dear Mom, thank you for carrying all the snacks all the time for all my hunger needs.
  7. Dear Mom, thank you for dealing with all those “easy-open” ketchup packets.
  8. Dear Mom, thank you for hoisting me in and out of my car seat 56,329 times a week.
  9. Dear Mom, thank you for not sleeping in past 8 AM; I like to get a head-start on my day.
  10. Dear Mom, thank you for giving up on keeping the bathroom sink clean; it feels overwhelming when it doesn’t have toothpaste in it.
  11. Dear Mom, thank you for your amazing ability to drive down the highway at 75 MPH while simultaneously opening up a cheese stick.
  12. Dear Mom, thank you for not being one of those seven kinds of animal species that eat their young.
  13. Dear Mom, thank you for all the times you cleaned the bathroom rugs because of my misplaced urine.
  14. Dear Mom, thank you for keeping me from digging through the tampon box on the side of every bathroom stall in America.
  15. Dear Mom, thank you for begging me to wear a jacket. You were right; it is kinda cold sometimes.
  16. Dear Mom, thank you for helping me with my 23 wardrobe changes a day; I couldn’t do it without you. In fact, I refuse to do it without you.
  17. Dear Mom, thank you for never being so invested in a task that I don’t feel like I can interrupt you.
  18. Dear Mom, thank you for buying me that set of 101 plastic army guys. My favorite part is watching you step on them; it’s like watching a real war.
  19. Dear Mom, thank you for wearing black yoga pants on most days; I feel less worried about putting my boogers on you when you are wearing that kind of outfit.
  20. Dear Mom, thank you for reminding me 333 times during one meal to sit on my chair; I seem to remember best on that 334th time.
  21. Dear Mom, thank you for being okay with your shower looking like a blue, plastic kiddie pool.
  22. Dear Mom, thank you for adding “socks” as a budget line item; I can’t seem to keep them on my feet or in our house.
  23. Dear Mom, thank you for always pretending to be on the phone; I know you’re just trickin’ me when you act like you’re talking to someone.
  24. Dear Mom, thank you for buying me clothes; I love pulling on the necks and chewing on the sleeves.
  25. Dear Mom, thank you for never replacing the carpet; that would be too much pressure.
  26. Dear Mom, thank you for finally understanding that it will take me 2.7 seconds to put on my shoes if we’re going to the park, but 978.3 seconds if we’re going to the grocery store. They really are so very different.
  27. Dear Mom, thank you for all the pulled muscles you have endured, so that you can steer the GINORMO car-cart down the very-small grocery aisles.
  28. Dear Mom, thank you for saving all of your serious conversations with dad for after I go to bed; I know you’re really exhausted by that point, but I really hate sharing you.
  29. Dear Mom, thank you for giving up on the belief that pillows are meant to stay on the couch.
  30. Dear Mom, thank you (again) for keeping me alive. You really are the very, VERY best.

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42 Things I Want You to Know about Sex

Tonight, you saw your daddy grab my bum. And ya know what? I’m okay with that. In fact, I am COMPLETELY and ENTIRELY okay with that.

Why?

Glad you asked.

In fact, while I’m at it, I’ll go ahead and share a whole list of things I want you to know (over time) about sex.

Make no mistake, you’ll hear these words come straight from your mama’s mouth as you grow, but figured it wouldn’t hurt to get a head-start on brainstorming my list.

So here goes…

  1. Sex is not a naughty, cuss word.
  2. Sex was God’s idea, not man’s.
  3. God wrote about sex. If you don’t believe me, check out that little book called “Song of Solomon.” Kids, that “garden” wasn’t filled with tulips and that “cluster of grapes” wasn’t attached to a vine.
  4. Sex is like riding a roller-coaster. It’s safe when you wear the harness, but it’s not safe when you don’t. Marriage is the harness that God intended; wear the harness………………………………..
  5. Sex outside of marriage can cloud your judgment and lead you down a bunch of unwanted paths.
  6. Though sex may feel good, it doesn’t mean it is “good.”
  7. Sex is never casual.
  8. Sex is not supposed to happen in a group or on the computer.
  9. You don’t have to have sex with someone to know you love them.
  10. Sex outside of marriage is sin.
  11. Sex outside of marriage can have long-reaching consequences.
  12. Sex outside of marriage is not an unforgivable, unpardonable sin.
  13. Intercourse is not the only thing that falls into the “sex box;” don’t fool yourself.
  14. “Having a baby” isn’t the main reason why we abstain from sex outside of marriage………………………………..
  15. Men like sex.
  16. Women like sex.
  17. Christian men and Christian women like sex.
  18. Sex is not just a “worldly activity.”
  19. The world has distorted sex and demeaned sex.
  20. The world has glorified sex and glamorized sex.
  21. The Christian culture has squashed sex and silenced sex.
  22. The Christian culture has let the world lead the conversation on sex, and it’s been a disaster.
  23. Sex can be awkward to talk about; your parents are okay with awkward.
  24. Sex can be weird to ask questions about; your parents are okay with weird questions.
  25. Silence breeds shame.
  26. Shame builds secrets.
  27. Sex doesn’t need to be a shameful secret we “google” on our computers and process on our own.

    ……………………………….

  28. Marriage is more than sex; much, much, MUCH more than sex.
  29. Sex is ONE way to express love; it’s certainly not the ONLY way.
  30. Sex is a healthy and normal part of marriage.
  31. “Lots of sex” is not necessarily an indicator of a healthy marriage.
  32. “Little sex” is not necessarily an indicator of an unhealthy marriage.
  33. Sex is part of a covenant, not a contract.
  34. Sex can be abused in marriage.
  35. “Movie sex” is not necessarily “marriage sex.” You’re a partner in a marriage, not an actor in a movie.
  36. Your sex life does not need to be compared with that of your friends. You are not your friends and your friends are not you.
  37. Sex takes work.
  38. Sex takes time.
  39. Sex takes communication.
  40. Sex is not only about her.
  41. Sex is not only about him.
  42. Sex is about loving him, loving her, and honoring Him.

And that’s all I got for right now.

But rest assure, I’ll be thinking of more and taking notes as they come. Because in all honesty, kids, these conversations are absolutely necessary and absolutely good–conversations that can’t be ignored, shouldn’t be dodged, and most certainly won’t be shoved in this house. The reality is…we love you too much to avoid a little bit of awkward.

Oh, oh…just thought of some more!

43. Your parents have sex.

44. Your parents like sex.

45. Your parents have had sex on the…

Okay, okay…I won’t take notes on everything.

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Dear Lord, Give me My Daily Baguette

It was Sunday morning, the morning after Daylight Savings Time, and I was sitting in the middle of Panera with my grande, hazelnut brew in my hands and my Bible open before me. Sitting in somewhat of a comatose state because not only had the brew not hit my blood stream, but also because Daylight Savings Time is just awful–ABSOLUTELY AWFUL.

Awful because Benjamin Franklin, jokingly suggested, that people wake up earlier in order to save on candles. UNBELIEVABLE. I can attribute my copious, caffeine consumption, my shortened fuse, my extra puffy eyes, my extra darker circles, and my children awake at the butt-crack of dawn to a joke about saving wax?!??! SERIOUSLY?!?! All over the world, mamas simultaneously curse Franklin from their beds and yet soberly remember that the man did invent electricity, which kindly fuels our Keurigs and hair dryers. Thank you, Benjamin, and yet…could you not have joked?!

I digress.

Anyway, I was sitting there with the Word open before me, feeling not only overwhelmed by my physical exhaustion, but also a tad consumed with the tasks and changes before me. My week was busy; my planner was full; and I was wondering how it was all going to get done. One child was being extra whiny for the past few days; one child was extra selfish as of late; and one mama was a little irritable and a lot tired. And on top of it, sitting there with this looming recognition that at any point, we could be called to parent another child–a child in crisis and in need of a home.

This sister was tired before the week even started. 

Thumbing my way to the next portion of Scripture I would be studying that morning, I found “Psalm 36:5-12” typed across the page. Rifling through those paper-thin pages of the best book ever written, I found my starting point and began reading.

Your love, LORD, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies. Your righteousness is like the highest mountains, your justice like the great deep. You, LORD, preserve both people and animals. How priceless is your unfailing love, O God! People take refuge in the shadow of your wings. They feast on the abundance of your house; you give them drink from your river of delights. For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light. 

And do you know what stood out to me? The very thing that caught my heart’s attention?

The possession of the provision!

Say what?

They [His people] will feast on the abundance of YOUR house; you give them drink from YOUR river of delights...

Whose abundance do we feast on? Whose river do we drink from?

YOUR house and YOUR river.

HIS.

And as quickly as the Lord pointed out the possession of the provision, my mind was drawn to the Lord’s prayer in Matthew.

Give us this day, our daily bread…

Immediately, my heart felt a wave of peace and thoughts of truth came pouring forth from the Spirit who dwells within my feeble frame.

[Jessica, it is from His abundant house that you will feast; it is from His river that you will drink, and He will give provide it daily…as you need. You don’t have to conjure up the provision and you don’t have to supply the abundance because HE’S GOT IT.  You don’t have to “plan enough” or “be enough” or “feel enough” because HE’S ENOUGH. The provision is from Him and through Him–not from my house and not from my river.]

And as I sat and thought about the way that He faithfully delights to preserve and provide for His people (the ones who take refuge in Him and acknowledge their inability to satiate their own hunger and their own thirst), I had this thought about the types of “bread” He provides for His people.

Now this might be a little weird, but track with me; I shared it with a girlfriend and she seemed to follow but then again, she might have been politely nodding. Who knows?!

Anyway…

I had this thought that maybe, just maybe, His “daily bread” isn’t the same every day. Maybe His “daily bread” is in accordance with my need, which changes from day to day and season to season. Maybe His “daily bread” meets my hunger and thirst right where they are, matching the deficits I bring to each day and each task. Like maybe His “daily bread” looks like a CROUTON some days. And maybe His “daily bread” looks like a SLICE on others. And maybe His “daily bread” looks like a BAGUETTE sometimes. And maybe, just maybe… His “daily bread” looks like a GIANT LOAF OF SOURDOUGH?!?!?!

And as I sat there in the middle of Panera, surrounded by all types of artisan breads, I marveled at the many forms of His gracious provision for me–the “daily bread” that tumbles from His house, and gurgles from His river, and meets me in the middle of my needy hunger and dependent thirst. 

And much like the psalmist who penned these words, I found myself uttering the words from verse seven, “How priceless is your unfailing love!”

HOW PRICELESS IS YOUR UNFAILING PROVISION OF DAILY BREAD!!!

Because no matter what my needs are today, or tomorrow, or the day after next, I can be confident that when I choose to rest in the possession of His provision, I will lack NO crouton, no slice, no baguette, and no loaf. EVER. 

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31 Giggles

Life is just too short, and too hard, and too serious, and too many other complicated, adult-like things to stifle the giggles and hold in the laughs.

Can I get an, “Amen?!?!”

So in an attempt to bring a smile to your face and maybe even conjure up a belly laugh or six, I thought I would share some of our recent “kid funnies.” Because seriously, laughing and smiling is just good for the soul.

  1. “Mommy, when I get older, I am going to have a wife, but I’m going to make her sleep in a different room because I am going to sleep with 50 blankets and won’t have room for her.” -Caden
  2. “Mommy got me ‘Sleeping Boobie.’ Mommy has ‘two boobies’ under her shirt.” -Evie
  3. “I not go to Caden’s school when I get big. I go to a pink school.” -Evie
  4. “Daddy got us ‘tinkies!’ No. Daddy got us ‘winkies!’ No. Daddy got us Twinkies!!!” -Evie
  5. “Mommy, do you sleep every chance you get?” -Caden
  6. “Mommy, I want the socks with the ‘poo-ka doots.'” -Evie’s version of “polka dots”
  7. While putting on his undies: “Sometimes my mouse just sneaks out of his house and tries to take a walk.” -Caden
  8. “Sometimes I look at kids at school and they have crusty things on their lips and on their eyes, but I don’t tell them how gross it looks.” -Caden
  9. Talking about heaven: “We gonna get new bodies when we get there!!!” -Evie
  10. Upon walking into the room and finding him with his eyes closed and breathing in and out: “Oh. Don’t mind me. I’m just breathing in and out and letting out my frustrations.” -Caden
  11. On Daddy’s birthday: “Happy Birthday to me and you and us!” -Evie
  12. “Mommy, I not say ‘butt.’ That’s not appropriate. Right? I not say ‘butt-butt!’ No saying ‘butt.’ Right?” -Evie
  13. Upon exiting the bathroom and standing in line at Piada in front of four men, standing ready to cook our food: “Mommy, my ‘pagina’ hurts sooooo bad.” Attempting to push it off, I respond, “You’re so excited to eat at Piada?!?!” Saying it even louder and grabbing herself: “NOOOO!!! I said, ‘My pagina hurts!!!” -Evie
  14. “Mommy, when you get kiss Daddy, my stomach hurts.” -Caden
  15. In the middle of family pictures: “I really hate pictures, so can I just get all my pictures first and be done with it?” -Caden
  16. “I get so tired of trying to come up with ideas for Evie to do when she just shoots them out of the sky.” -Caden
  17. “Mommy, that poopie looks like a bunch of turtles!” -Evie
  18. “Mommy, you don’t change in your room. You’re supposed to change in the bathroom near the toilet.” -Caden
  19. “Do I have to keep going to school for the rest of my life? Can’t I just skip to the last grade? This is exhausting!” -Caden
  20. “I don’t need you to wipe me. I just went poopie. It’s okay. I’m fine.” -Evie
  21. “Mommy!!!! Since I went to Kindergarten, I’m getting hair in weird places!” -Caden
  22. “I so frustrated!!! I don’t know any sight words!!!” -Evie
  23. “I wish I had never gotten an alarm for Christmas. It makes me so tired and scared!” -Caden
  24. “I don’t like when you wear glasses. You just look weird.” -Caden
  25. “How many times do I have to tell you, Evie?!?! It’s like you don’t even have ears to listen!” -Caden
  26. “Dear God, thank you that Mommy works so that we can eat.” -Caden
  27. After a run: “I am a righteous man! Hallelujah!!!”-Caden
  28. While in Target near the lingerie section: “Mommy!!! Look at the black boobies!!!” -Evie
  29. “Mommy, I have no clue what Daddy made for dinner last night. It was just weird but it tasted okay.”
  30. “Sometimes at night when I can’t sleep, I just pull up my shirt and make circles around my nipples.” -Caden
  31. “I could barely sleep last night in the tent because I was so worried about Evie needing to poop in the middle of the night.” -Caden

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Swiss Chard, Lent, and the Sunday My Son Lost His Mind

I grew up in a Baptist church, and we never talked about Lent (at least if they did, I never heard about it). To me, Lent was kind of like Swiss Chard growing up. It was a real thing; it was mysterious; people partook of it; and yet I had no clue about either. And to be honest, though I’m more familiar with the practices of Lent and the lettuce called Swiss Chard, I’m still learning and growing in my knowledge of both.

I can’t say that I’ve yet to buy a book on Swiss Chard (there is actually a real book on Amazon ALL about Swiss Chard. I do not tell a lie. Google it for yourself; it’s real. I just did), but I did buy a book at the beginning of February on Lent–its history, its purpose, and practical ways to implement fasting, prayer, and alms-giving. It was good–so good. I won’t and don’t have the time to block quote his entire book, but Aaron Damiani in his book, The Good of Giving Up, did an absolutely stupendous job of outlining beautiful reasons why believers (in all denominations) can practice this beautiful journey to the cross.

Designated in the church calendar to be the 40 days leading up to Easter Sunday, Lent is a season where we create “wilderness experiences” for our hearts and souls, so that we can help ready our souls to embrace the beauty of the Resurrection.  Lent is a season where we carve out extra time to boost our prayer lives, strengthen our generosity (in all forms), and fast from the things that take our time, attention, and energy. Lent can be practiced and implemented in all kinds of ways and to all kinds of degrees; Lent is PERSONAL. Lent is not meant to be worshiped; it’s not meant to earn God’s favor; it’s not meant to trim our waistlines; it’s not meant to twist God’s arm into acting how we want Him to act; and it’s certainly not meant to make us “holier than thou.” From my perspective, the sole purpose of Lent is a set-aside time where we can deliberately focus our hearts on the cross and ALL that it means for our lives.

So…after reading the book in the month of February and then praying through the areas in my life that need both a “fast” and some “reinforcements,” I decided that we would broach the subjects with the kids.

Leisurely and spontaneously, I introduced the topic at Sunday lunch. Giving a short explanation for Lent (what it is, why we do it, and how we can practice it), I then shared the ways that I had planned to observe Lent in 2017 and then Daddy shared too.

I explained that in my “fast,” I would be saying “goodbye” to Facebook, Amazon shopping, and “bored snacking” in between meals. I shared how FB, Amazon, and “bored snacking” can take away time and attention from God, and how they can bring a joy that can easily become an idol. I also explained the ways that I felt like God was leading me to be more generous, specifically in areas related to my time (hosting, phone calls instead of texts, notes instead of emails…). And lastly, I shared the ways that I had planned to spent some extra time in prayer and study of God’s Word.

Things were going fabulously.

But then I said, “Soooooo, I was thinking that maybe we could start helping you guys practice Lent.”

Everyone was still in their right minds.

“And I was thinking that one of the things that you guys really love is your TV shows.”

Weird faces started happening.

“Aaaannnndddd…I was thinking that maybe in order to create some more space for God, we would decrease the number of shows we watch and instead…spend a couple of evenings a week, watching the What’s in the Bible with Buck Denver DVDs as a family.”

And then my son just LOST it. 

Like heaping, huge, ginormo alligator tears, he started wailing. Not even kidding.

“NOOOOOOOOO. I love my shows!!! That’s not fair!!! I don’t like it!!!”

I can’t remember all his protests and honestly, I couldn’t even hear most of them through the sobs, but suffice to say…BOY WAS “MIFFED-MAD” (I just coined that term, which is exactly why you’ve probably never heard of it before. NBD.).

Again, I reminded him that we weren’t suggesting that “we take away ALL of the shows” but rather decrease the amount of time spent watching the shows they are allotted, so that we could create some extra time to spend as a family–focusing on Easter, the Word, and other activities that promote generosity.

That seemed to bring some reassurance.

“So we can still watch some of our shows?”

“Yes, you can still watch some.”

“Okay. We can do that.”

(younger sister sat in silence watching the whole drama unfold)

Clearly, we had struck an idol nerve. Clearly, we had pounced on something that means a lot to him. Clearly, we had identified an area that he holds dear. And my, oh my, did I ever understand!

No FB posts for 40 days? No “likes” that bring happy pick-me-ups throughout the day?

No quick shopping on Amazon? No scarves and books and dumb junk that brings an easy thrill?

No snacks? No Doritos? No popcorn? No opportunities to stuff feelings and provide an easy, mind-numbing, night-time activity?

YYYYYYYIIIIIIIKKKKKEEESSS!!!

Think about taking stuff away, and it doesn’t take long to realize the things we value, love, and even worship. 

Fast forward to today, two days after we leaked the idea of Lent.

“Mommy, when does Lent start?”

“It actually starts tomorrow.”

“Oh. Okay. I was just wondering.”

He didn’t sound angry, wasn’t presenting hysterical, and didn’t appear to be ready to jump off the TV ledge; he simply sounded interested.

Having no clue how he would respond but wanting to know what he had gathered from our lunch discussion on Sunday, I asked, “So, what is Lent all about?”

Without missing a beat, he said, “Lent helps us make extra space so we can worship God.”

A smile the size of Mississippi spread across my face.

“You’re right, buddy. You’re exactly right.”

I have no clue what Lent 2017 has in store for the Buczek family, but I am eager to see how God is going to use our “extra space” to bring us into deeper relationship with Him. At the end of the 40 days, I pray that we would look more like Him and less like us and that Lord willing, we won’t lose our minds every single day for 40 days!

 

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22 Reasons Why You Should Praise Jesus for Your Daddy

  1. Because post-nursing, your daddy is your only hope for being heard in the middle of the night. Your cries, your poops, your lost stuffed animals…he hears it all while your mommy is complete G-O-N-E (those nursing days ZAPPED me for the next 18…or at least until you start crawling out the window).
  2. Because if your daddy didn’t monitor our budget and monies, we would be living in a teepee in your grandparents’ back yard because either we spent it all at Chipotle or we bought the whole world a set of books.
  3. Because if your daddy didn’t set up a monthly reminder to change the Brita filters, we would all be under the treatment of a physician for mold.
  4. Because if your daddy didn’t set up a monthly reminder to change the furnace filter, there’s a good chance our house would catch fire at some point or another.
  5. Because if your daddy didn’t monitor the toothpaste tube, you would never know what a tube of toothpaste is supposed to look like, nor would you be able to pry off that dried-up, gunk of a lid.
  6. Because without your daddy, there’s a good chance that you would only be able to count to 10 and addition and subtraction would be out of the question, never mind multiplication and division.
  7. Because without your daddy successfully hiding a key in the yard, we would be locked out of the house…like your whole life.
  8. Because without your daddy, you would either never have a hair cut, or we would have already dropped approximately $840.00 in the last five years to have Great Clips do it.
  9. Because without your daddy, we would probably be lost on some mountain because we didn’t take the time to read a map, don’t know how to read a map , thought we could just “figure it out.”
  10. Because without your daddy, we would still be stuck in Wal-Mart counseling some random soul who your mommy does not know but because she said “hello” and smiled, she has now heard a life map and two, life trajedies.
  11. Because without your daddy, Doritos would be a food group.
  12. Because without your daddy, none of us would remember to take vitamins and all our bones would be breaking.
  13. Because without your daddy, the IRS would have already put me in jail because I’d have absolutely NO clue what to “claim.”
  14. Because without your daddy, there is a good chance that you might be getting your own breakfast in the morning while I hit “snooze” for the 12th time.
  15. Because without daddy, there would be nothing ALIVE and THRIVING in our yard, except dandelions.
  16. Because with your daddy, there would be no functioning smoke alarms, no LED bulbs, and we would be using copious amounts of water to take daily baths…just for fun.
  17. Because without your daddy, we would have no functional cars because I’m SURE that your mommy would not remember the mileage for the next oil change.
  18. Because without daddy, there would be no home-made pretzels, no biscuits, no bread, and no pizza. And forget the grilled meat that you guys love, I’d light myself on fire and our house if #4 hadn’t already occurred.
  19. Because without your daddy, the fruit of “self-control” might be a foreign concept for ya’ll.
  20. Because without your daddy, organized trips where you have room to sit in the car WITH your luggage…would just NOT happen.
  21. Because without your daddy, we would all be throwing a tantrum on the floor and worrying about our obsessions.
  22. Because without your daddy, life would be incredibly unbalanced, potentially unhealthy, and absolutely less safe, peaceful, and thriving.

Kids, you are so blessed; WE are SO blessed. Your daddy is one of our greatest gifts and though I could continue on and on…and on and on…with this list, suffice to say that God was good and kind to give us a daddy like ours. Lord knows we need him!

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