Day 355: Fictional Fathers: George Darling

George Darling is the father character in Barrie’s Peter Pan, and the Disney adaptation. In the stage musical, the same person typically plays Captain Hook and Mr. Darling. Both of them have grown unfond of youthful fun, and see as it an obstacle to progress and good sense.

At the end of the account, however, he looks out the window and sees Peter Pan’s ship flying away and remembers something of his childhood, how it felt to be young and fancy free, whimsical and imaginative.

As we get older, we too can lose this zest for life though we see it continue in our children. Perhaps we can let our children remind us of the things that we have forgotten, so that we do not become jaded toward life and youthful fun.


Day 354: Umberto Eco on Fatherhood

“I believe that what we become depends on what our fathers teach us at odd moments, when they aren’t trying to teach us. We are formed by little scraps of wisdom.” – Umberto Eco

Day 353: Homework!

Doing homework with your kids can be a frustrating experience. There’s often quite a bit of it, and you may or may not know how to help them with material, especially is to grow older. If a child needs consistent help on his or her homework, just make sure to make this a structured thing.

Have a certain place and time where you do homework and make it part of the routine. In the place for you do homework, keep everything that you need, from pencils, to calculators, to erasers, to paper. Find a place that is relatively free of distractions and where you can be comfortable while you were working. Homework by itself can be agitating enough and you don’t need anything else distracting or bothering you while you’re trying to do homework.

If you really don’t know the answer to something, don’t be afraid to admit it, but use the chance to teach your child how to look for answers and study. Use the opportunity to teach them organizational skills, neatness skills, and time management skills. Make it something that you insist upon, but that let them know that you are available and happy to help so they will come to you consistently with their problems.

Day 352: The Bored List

During the summers growing up, there was just the possibility that we might actually be bored. I don’t think I really have experienced boredom most of my adult life. Back then it was a real possibility.


There was also the temptation to while away the summer simply watching TV or playing video games. That’s where the so-called Bored List comes in. This was actually somewhat of a checklist. It contains 100 activities that needed to be completed by the end of the summer.


These included all sorts of things from the typical summer things like going to pool or making homemade lemonade, and more difficult things such as having a scavenger hunt with friends.


My parents told us that anyone who completed everything on the Bored List would be treated to a dinner at a restaurant of our choice. This proved enough motivation for us, and every morning, we would plan to see how many of the unchecked items we could fit into our schedule.


It turned out that almost every summer, everyone was able to complete their lists by the time the school started again. Looking back, I’m very grateful that that was available to us. The times in my childhood that I’ll remember aren’t typically the times I was playing a video game, but the times I was checking something off the Bored List.


People on the Internet post their lists to give you ideas for something that might work for your family. Here’s just one example:

Day 351: Mary Stevenson’s Poem “Footprints”

One night I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord.

Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky.

In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand.

Sometimes there were two sets of footprints,

other times there were one set of footprints.


This bothered me because I noticed

that during the low periods of my life,

when I was suffering from

anguish, sorrow or defeat,

I could see only one set of footprints.


So I said to the Lord,

“You promised me Lord,

that if I followed you,

you would walk with me always.

But I have noticed that during

the most trying periods of my life

there have only been one

set of footprints in the sand.

Why, when I needed you most,

you have not been there for me?”


The Lord replied,

“The times when you have

seen only one set of footprints,

is when I carried you.”

-Mary Stevenson

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.