Day 350: Ogden Nash on Fatherhood

Children aren’t happy without something to ignore, And that’s what parents were created for.
Ogden Nash


Day 349: The Golden Rule of Marriage

The golden rule is perhaps one of the most crucial parts of the marriage. You can gauge everything that you do in your marriage by whether you would like to have it done back to you.

If you don’t want your spouse to raise her voice at you, don’t raise your own voice. If you want patience and forgiveness, you should give that out as well. If you want her to be thoughtful and kind, do not look for ways to change her behavior, but look inward and see how you can become more thoughtful and kind yourself.

In a good marriage, each spouse reflects the other and both reflections are beautiful.

Day 348: Superman’s Dad

It’s funny to think about, but even Superman had a dad. And his father’s final act was to place his son in the spaceship and send him far away even though the rest of them would die, so that perhaps his son would be spared. He gave the ultimate sacrifice for his son.

But even though Superman is a fictional account, it is worth noting, for example, the sacrifice in the story. It pays to ask yourself the question, what would you be willing to give up for your children? Would you be able and willing to make the ultimate sacrifice?

Luckily, this is not asked of most of us, but it is still a good thing to consider. The depth of what we will sacrifice for our children, reflects on the depth of our commitment and love for them. When it comes to being a father, it often means sacrificing what we want in order for our children to have a better life.

Day 346: Parting is Sweet Sorrow

It’s the sad truth that we as fathers often have to leave the home for work or other pursuits. This can cause children a great deal of distress when you were leaving, and so it is good to come up with strategies to ease the parting blow.

You might want to have something that comforts the child like a blanket of stuffed animal they can play with my daddy is away. You might have a picture of you and your child that they can have when you are away.

If they have a particularly bad reaction when you go, you might try having something to distract them in a different room when you’re actually leaving. And don’t forget to tell them that you love them before you go. When you leave the house, you just never know what’s going to happen.

Day 345: Learning to Mow the Lawn

When your kids get old enough, a useful life skill for them is to know how to mow a lawn. Not only will this help you out, but it will give them a useful life skill that they can use to make money if they want to.

There are a lot of things that you want to teach them about lawnmowing besides the actual logistics of going row by row across the lawn. You want to teach them how to remove obstacles beforehand and to be careful what they run over. You want to teach them how and where to dump out the grass clippings, and where and how to refuel and prime the lawn mower.

One good thing that we did going up was splitting the task between two or more siblings so that nobody felt too overwhelmed by it on Saturday. I took the front yard one week and the backyard the next week and switched off with my younger brother. The parents paid us for the service, which gave us a bit of spending money, which became useful especially as we got a little bit older.

Day 342: Grooming Tasks

Because your wife will often be close proximity with you, she is more likely to notice all those little grooming things that crop up. Face it, men don’t often think about the hair on the back of your neck words, coming out of your ears, and things like that.

The problem is these things are hard to take care of yourself, and so it might be something that you kindly ask your wife if she wants to help you with. Chances are, she will like that you look more presentable by doing something that only takes a minute or two and can have big results on how you look.

Day 341: You Have to Be Carefully Taught

In the Broadway musical, South Pacific, Emile is a single father, whose wife has died. He’s exile from his home country of France who married an islander woman with whom he had two children. When he meets someone with whom he wants to be romantically involved, it first causes great strain when she learns that he has these children. The racial prejudices of the day created a barrier through which love cannot pass.

There is a song in this musical about this obstacle that says that you have to be carefully taught to hate and fear other people who look for act or look differently than you do. This is the prime responsibility for us as fathers to make sure that our children are carefully taught, but in the correct way, to be loving and accepting of other people, especially those who are different.

We don’t often think about sitting down and having such conversations with our children, but it will also be something that you teach them by your example, about how you treat people were different from you. Make it a point to set a good example to carefully teach them to be free of crippling prejudice.