Tag Archives: Holidays

Take a Bow, Dad. It’s Father’s Day!

The wise Socrates said, “The un-examined life is not worth living”. To do this we must examine our actions to evaluate how we are meeting our personal ideals and goals. If you are reading this you are sure to be one who is serious about living a purposeful life, so here is a thought about Father’s Day.

Why not look at each Father’s Day as the beginning of a New Year as a dad? Take a little time out of the day to examine what you are doing as a dad and what you want to do better during the next year. Things I try to always improve on are being a good listener, being thoughtful and caring, patient and kind — being determined and focused, strong and courageous. All of these are virtues of a good dad. And none of us is perfect at them all, but we can continue to practice. Examine yourself, be kind to yourself but firm, and do this all out of love and respect for your children.

You might ask your kids, “How am I doing as your dad?” Make this a playful question and expect playful answers, but listen to what they are not saying, too. It is important to point out here, if there are any real family problems going on, Father’s Day is not the day to explore them. This is a day to show happiness and gratitude without any rancor or discord.

It is a good day to tell your kids how grateful you are to be their dad! Tell them that you love them and always try to do everything for them that is in their best interest. (Don’t be too surprised if they roll their eyes at that.) Remember you can celebrate Father’s Day only because of your kids! Once again they are at the center of this celebration and let them know it.

Finally, take a bow! It is not easy to be a good dad. A good dad is always present to his kid’s needs and concerns, and that takes its toll on a guy. A dad has to “make it up” as he goes because no one has ever faced exactly the demands he deals with daily, and that takes its toll. So as you examine how you are doing, take time to think about all the good you are doing each day — and take a bow.

Have a wonderful day Man. Happy New Year and take a bow.

Thanksgiving: The Holiday & Beyond

As we approach this family holiday, I want to share this article on how we can develop a thankful attitude in ourselves and our children. Learning to be grateful for the good things in our lives enriches all of us. Happy Thanksgiving!

Click the picture below to read this article:


All About You…

Tis the season of rushing, gifting, eating, drinking and trying to be jolly. All the anticipation and all the responsibilities of being a Dad during the holidays can be real hard to deal with. So in this post I am going to encourage you to look after yourself as you look after others. Enjoy the season!

Try to do what you can to keep things cheerful and pleasant.
You will be more relaxed if you do.

Try to show others a good time. You will be more satisfied with the results.

Try to do things that make everyone you meet better because they met you.
You will be in charge.

Take time to listen to others, carefully and thoughtfully and respond sincerely.
You will be appreciated.

Give time to others, children, spouse, family and friends.
You will feel their joy.

Read to your kids and grandkids while sitting close to them and speaking in soft tones.
It creates lasting memories of you.

Try not to correct your children in front of others. Realize they are excited and tired and really often not on their best behavior on holidays. Go easy on them. A gentle father, understanding, loving and supportive is the best instruction a child can receive.

You will enjoy the holidays if you look after yourself, not by indulging yourself by being the boss and the center of everything. Rather you will make a mark during the holidays and throughout the year if you consider the impact you have on your children. Successful dads have self-esteem and self-control and they teach their children more by what they do then by what they say.

By the way, if you know other dads who would like to know about The Manual for Dads please tell them. And let me know what you think. Remember Better Dads, Better Kids, A Better World for All.

…And to All a Good Night

When I got old enough, my parents and older sister told me that in fact Santa was not the jolly man at Wyman’s Department Store in South Bend, Indiana, but he lived in the hearts of all as the spirit of Christmas.

Since Santa is a spirit he inhabits those who wish to share love and joy with others. And to your kids you bring that spirit of Christmas to them.

For dads Christmas can be very stressful. Lots to accomplish and not much time. Sometime work places extra burdens on you during the holidays. And family can create stress for all kinds of reasons. (My brother-in-law Rick tells me that “the reason God places us in families is so we won’t fight with strangers”). But I have found the best way to celebrate Christmas with your kids is to do it stress free.

“That’s easy to say” you complain.  But I tell you it is possible more often than not.  Sure sometimes very disturbing things happen around Christmas that you have no control over. I am not talking about those kinds of things here. What I am talking about are the petty things that often happen when families get together that get in the way of joy and celebration.

If you follow my posts you will recall I often mention that as the dad you should set the emotional agenda for your kids. You are the adult, and you need to take charge of the moment. So if things start to go sour for any reason, take the initiative and turn things around. Find a way to change the subject, distract this distractor and put all the energy toward a pleasant time.

Christmas dinner is an especially important event as you gather around the table with your kids. Talk about the Christmas story, about the good people do for one another, about how your family is fortunate to have each other.  If none of these suggestions work, then come up with other topics that create a time of joy and togetherness.

As a dad, be sensitive to the fact that your kids are excited with all that’s going on, so they need a little more patience and understanding. Although this is not a time to say “anything goes” it is OK to take a more relaxed view of things. After all you personify the spirit of Christmas. So when in doubt think of “what would Santa do?”

Whether you are a Christian or not, Christmas is a good time of year for all. For what is celebrated is a feast of love. This is reason to say Merry Christmas to all and to all a goodnight.