Hiding Place

2 R Better Than 1

One of my all-time favorite games to play as a kid growing up in Louisiana was Hide and Seek. As the youngest, smallest kiddo in my neighborhood, I couldn’t play many games as well as the other kids. They were more athletic, funnier, and more creative than I. They made growing up on that street memorable. They were all like big brothers and sisters to me — allowing me to play whatever they played, but they were just more experienced at everything. The one thing that I did better than all of them, however, was hide — between things, under things, and on top of things. I could hear them out there. “Wow, where could she be? We can’t ever find her. How does she do that?”

Imagine me crouching between the old wash house and the tree that rained down pecans every time the wind blew. No one could…

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Don’t Be Spacey in Cyber Space! – Unbreakable Joy

While discussing self-love with my friend Niki she asked me what I thought self-love “looked like” in my life. I explained in this moment that, self-love looks like not forcing something to be diff…

Source: Don’t Be Spacey in Cyber Space! – Unbreakable Joy

Is It More Difficult Raising a Child In the 21st Century?

Danny

Is It More Difficult Raising a Child In the 21st Century?

I wrote yesterday about bullying and how it is dangerous for everything to be viewed as such.  It led one reader to email me and ask me how will I raise my children once Evelina and I start a family.  This question intrigued me so I thought I’d drop a few letters together and formulate my thoughts.  Here goes…

The types of things we have discussed that we would like to be a part of our parentology will be (in no particular order):

  1. Understand that your parents love you no matter what, but sometimes we must discipline you.  It’s for your own good.
  2. Not all people are bad, bud not all people are good so don’t ride with strangers.
  3. When you grow up you’ll realize the world is ruled by “nerds” so don’t be afraid to show your intelligence.
  4. Befriend the kids that others make fun of and love the kid who teases; he or she is hurting inside badly.
  5. Don’t rely solely on technology; look up occasionally!
  6. Always do what you say you will do; your word will be incredibly important when you are an adult.
  7. In all things show character; people will respect you for doing so.
  8. Don’t talk about people behind their backs; mind your own business.
  9. Keep your checkbook balanced.
  10. If you can’t afford it, then you can’t afford it; do not accumulate credit card debt.
  11. Things will always be things, but life is all about experience and memories; invest your energy into making memories.
  12. Lie in the grass and stare at the clouds once in a while.
  13. Forgive your parents, we’re not perfect and will make mistakes.
  14. You have incredible value so expect others to treat you as such.
  15. Volunteer your time to helping others.
  16. Be a good friend.
  17. Do not be afraid to dream big dreams.  The great innovators didn’t become great by thinking “normal”.
  18. Not everyone is meant for college so if your life course is a skilled trade then be the best skilled tradesman/woman you can be.
  19. Always know that no matter how old you get, you’ll always be our little boy/girl.
  20. Always know  that your mother and father love you.

Obviously I have left a lot off of this list, but I have to end it somewhere.  Evelina and I are putting together some of the values that we agree we want to instill in our kids.  I’m not sure how many people have this conversation, but I think it is critical versus winging it.  Of course, there is no definitive guide, but I believe couples need to talk about and have a common belief system; especially when it comes to disciplining children.

We have had this conversation about every aspect of our life thus far and it has not failed us so we are continuing the practice.

What would you add to my list?

Danny

The Problem With “Everything Is Bullying”

Danny

The Problem With “Everything Is Bullying”

About a year ago I had a conversation with my nephew in which he was talking about being picked on at school or something to that effect.  If I recall, at the time he was having some issues with a kid who he called a bully.  The kid was picking on him a little bit, but it didn’t seem too awful and he even acknowledged it wasn’t all the time and wasn’t too bad.  What I found interesting was the fact that he used the word “bully” to describe being picked on.  And I think there is a fundamental problem with “everything is bullying”.

Now when I was a younger lad we had some bullies and they were down right dastardly.  My friends and I would avoid their street walking home from school.  We would make sure we were never around this one particular kid ever!  This kid was definitely a bully in every sense of the word.  I saw him hold a broken piece of glass to a kids throat, made another kid kiss a piece of dog poo and he’d dole out noogies like they were Christmas presents.  He was such a great kid!

The conversation with my nephew made me wonder how he would be able to handle my bully in this day-n-age if he considers getting picked on as bullying.

It also got me thinking about modern society and how I think we’ve overdone it a bit.  Now, don’t go blowing up my inbox until I offer this disclaimer: I think it is awesome that schools and parents are so incredibly aware of bullying and are working to create environments where bullying is eliminated.

But how do you identify what is bullying and what is not.

I guess my fear is that if you label everything as bullying then nothing becomes bullying.  It devalues actual bullying; it’s almost a case of crying wolf isn’t it?  Let’s face it, kids are going to pick on one another.  I don’t know why children do it, but they do.  And teasing isn’t necessarily bullying.  But are we diminishing the true act of bullying by teaching kids to label everything as bullying?

At its core bullying is a form of oppression.  It occurs when someone uses their influence or power to make someone who appears weaker to do what they want them to do.  Now I do agree that if someone targets one particular individual over and over and picks on them, that could be considered bullying.  But if it happens infrequently I’m not so sure.

My overall point is that it appears we’ve taken many things to the extreme with modern-day child rearing.  If everything is considered bullying, if everyone gets a trophy, if there are never winners and losers, if every child is awesome and great, then what happens when these kids are dropped out of college or high school right in the middle of the real world?

What happens when these kids realize they aren’t super-duper special?  What happens when they realize life is really hard?  What happens when they realize there are winners and losers in life?  What happens when people at work talk about them behind their back or pick on them?

When we shelter children and hide them from the world we don’t actually teach them anything and then one day life is going to consume and overwhelm them.  Then what do we do with them?

We are already seeing assimilation issues with many millennials.  They are struggling with basic human interaction in the work place.

My fear is that if something isn’t done there’s going to be a whole new generation of kids that simply can’t cope, depression rates will rise as will the suicide rate.

Maybe I have a dooms day view, but I don’t think I’m far off.

Danny

Is Happiness the Thing That’s Making You Miserable?

DannyIs Happiness the Thing That’s Making You Miserable?

It is easy to have a smile on your face when life is going according to plans.  It isn’t so easy to keep a reasonable attitude when life drops you in a pile of manure.  And I don’t think it is expected of anyone to lie in the manure with a beaming smile on one’s face.  Sometimes you are going to feel a little melancholy and that is okay.

I’m not sure who started this “you need to be happy all the time” idea, but they need to be shot.  Figuratively speaking of course.

Happiness is an emotion.  And like all emotions it comes and it goes.  Sometimes you will be sad and there will be periods of time when you will be happy.  But you should not expect to be happy all the time; it simply isn’t a realistic expectation and having a goal of happiness might be what’s making you miserable.

Instead of happiness I focus on fulfillment and joy.  I work everyday to find more things that make me feel full.  Full of self-pride, full of confidence, full of self-esteem, full of joy, full of wonder, etc.

I find ways to get full by eating a little healthier, working a little harder, seeking out new experiences, loving my wife to the fullest extent, reading books that challenge my brain and, of course, writing my blog.

I seek to be full of joy, not happiness.  I strive to increase my fulfillment, not to be happy all the time.

The goal of happiness is what makes so many people feel as though they are broken or “less than” and that is unfortunate.

Here’s a thought: stop trying to be happy all the time.  Start focusing on joy and being a little more fulfilled.

Danny

The Most Important College Course Ever: Happiness 101

Peace from Panic

Image result for images of college students in large lecture hall

Last night I was making dinner and half listening to the NBC Nightly News. I rushed around the kitchen, browning the chicken, dicing the red rose potatoes, and making a salad, when I heard a story that literally stopped me in my tracks.

The reporter was talking about the increasing mental health problems on college campuses. More than ever before, students are anxious, depressed, and overwhelmed.

There’s a course at Yale that teaches kids how to be happy. Ingenious.

Psychology professor Laurie Santos developed the class. She teaches students how to live a more satisfying life.

“Psychology and the Good Life” is the most popular course in Yale’s 316-year history. Nearly one-fourth of Yale undergraduates students are enrolled.

That statistic speaks volumes.

Millennials, also known as “the anxious generation,” desperately want to know how to be happier, less stressed, and more fulfilled.

“Psychology and the Good Life” focuses on:

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Rebecca Katz’s Magic Mineral Broth

The Purple Almond

Hello everyone! I know I promised that I’d be back today, however, I had something come up, which may take up the rest of this week. So, I decided to repost one of my favorite recipes. This broth is just the thing for this time of year. If you’ve been feeling a bit under the weather, if you’ve have the flu or a cold, this broth is just the thing for you.

With each course at our school, we prepare a “recipe of the course”. This recipe from Rebecca Katz was the very first recipe we prepared. It’s divine and SUPER HEALTHY! I first posted this recipe a year ago.

So, I’ll be taking the remainder of the week off from my normal posts. If I have time, I’ll be posting my review of Sun Basket Meal Delivery Service. Also coming up are Blue Apron, as well as Martha &…

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Adventures in Volunteering- Kidsitting

Gallery

This gallery contains 12 photos.

Originally posted on WRITE OUTSIDE:
Not all volunteering has to involve helping strangers in need. When looking for volunteering opportunities I also looked in my inner circle as well. Close friends of ours are parents to two young children. In…