Thursday, September 10, 2009

Better with time

I happened to be looking through some documents at the kitchen table and an old high school photo popped out. I was in this picture looking fly, at least I thought. My beautiful wife was sitting at the table with me. I showed her the photo in the hopes of hearing some kind of encouragement. I said, "See me in the photo?" She said, "I see...ummp!" And then she bursts out laughing. What kind of wife...would laugh at her husband?!?!? Here's the salt to wound -- She then begins to add, "I don't wanna tell you what this looks like because I don't want to hurt your feelings", as she continues to laugh. As I lick my wounds, I ask her to tell me. She proceeds---"You know the show Land of the Lost?" This conversation is not going in the right direction. "You look like the alien on the show!", she says. Nice! We are both laughing by now. At the time of the photo, I was wearing a red cardigan sweater, red turtle neck, grey slacks, black loafers, and some dark sunglasses. You couldn't tell me jack! I was hot!---then! But now, ummmmm.....

My boys look at the photo. The youngest starts yelling out, "Those glasses! Oh my GOSH! Those glasses! What in the world!" And on and on.....

The fortunate thing for me is that my wife said that I have aged well. Thank God for the upgrade. I have to make sure that I keep up with the times. My wife tells me that I should go shopping for me and take care of me. I think more about her and the boys and their needs; I put myself on the back burner. What I have to remember is that I also represent them. Perish the thought if my boys look at me as Frumpy Daddy.

Lend me your thoughts on how you keep it up. There is no off season in my learning...Peace.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

My kids were upgraded!

I recently picked up my boys from visiting their grandparents in Atlanta, Georgia as well as a quick visit to their great- grandparents in Sumter, SC. They are truly blessed to have great- grandparents still alive and active to enjoy them. I was so happy to see them. They seemed to grow a bit since the last time we saw them and a bit more mature; they were with their grandparents for three weeks, a nice break for my wife and I (that will be another blog later).

It seemed that this break from their parents did them well. Yet, they came back...different. Number one...we were no longer being answered with 'yes', but now 'yes sir' and 'yes mam'. Their grandmother taught them that teaching them to add 'sir' and 'mam' will go a long way in showing respect to others, especially those who are older or of authority. Number two...when they made a mistake, it wasn't the usual 'I'm sorry', but rather 'I apologize'. Grandmom told them that they need not speak that they are 'sorry'. Being sorry is for losers! We asked our oldest one night where did they learn these new manners. He said Grandmom taught us these 'better manners'. Okay...there's more.

They came back a lot more helpful around the house, like picking up dishes without being asked. Yes, they had done that in the past, but it just seemed different. Number three...they came back...fatter! What were they eating down there? Sorry, here's the better question -- what were they eating here? Better question -- were they eating enough here? Man, they came back different...for the better.

My boys weren't disrespectful. They were never slobs around the house. But man, did their grandmother bring about some fresh perspectives. And they are welcomed! I didn't have to worry about them being spoiled by grandmom. She was a teacher of over twenty-five years. In fact, my parents and grandparents are all teachers. What she added was an 'upgrade' to my boys culture, a welcomed upgrade. My challenge is to continue what has been taught. I know culture has changed. 'Mam' and 'Sir' are rarely used anymore. Yet, it feels weird to hear our boys use those terms. It feels even stranger to hear them call my wife and I by those terms. I forget that I had to address my parents the same way. Maybe its a southern thang! Or maybe its a respect thang!

Lend me you thoughts. I have no off season in knowing more...BTW, please forgive me for saying 'Sorry' previously; I should have apologized. Sorry about that, I mean I apologize...oh, forget it! My bad!