Friday, September 21, 2018

A Hairy Situation


Man... I can't help it...

When she comes out rocking her hair in some kind of crazy, natural manner...

I'm a sucker for it!


And I know - I'm probably driving y'all nuts with all the hair posts.

Or maybe you're just thinking "Yo... at least he's not talking about race and racism and making us all uncomfortable..."

Don't you worry - there's plenty of time to talk more about that - and it's kinda fun to watch you guys squirm (I know who gets super squirmy and who doesn't... your trends are easier to read than a Dr. Seuss book!)


But for today at least - let's just revel in the beauty of this girl and her hair!


Meron... you are one beautiful little lady and daddy would give anything to rock a head of hair like yours!

I love that God was specific and unique when He breathed life into you!

Stay hairy, girl... and stay wild!

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Hey Hey Hey... Goodbye!


Seasons. I love 'em.

Fall is my favorite one but out here in Colorado they are all pretty dope.

I think Solomon (and Pete Seeger and eventually The Byrds) said it best when he said:

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
A time to be born, & a time to die; a time to plant, a time to reap that which is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
A time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.
Seasons. They're not all the same - but they have one thing in common - we eventually say "GOODBYE!" to them.


And so it is with people who are seasonal in our lives as well. Lately we have had to let go of some seasonal people that in hindsight - maybe should have never even been a season at all.

I mean - if our time together looks and feels more like the 1990 Yankees season (a train wreck) - then maybe... just maybe... we weren't really in a season of friendship anyway.


There are really only a handful of reasons I would ever block or ban somebody from our world (especially in social media). And contrary to popular belief... not agreeing with me isn't one of those reasons.

It's simple really.

1. You're dangerous to my family
You've threatened my family in any way (death threats... yep... received 'em). You engage and promote a dialogue or rhetoric that is directly or indirectly dangerous to my family and families like mine. You got to go. Unapologetically. Bye. There's only been a few of these.

2. You're just plain mean and ugly
You're passive aggressive. You wrap your hateful differences up in an "I love you and your family" sandwich. Out one side of your mouth you tell me how hateful I am, how clueless I am, how self-righteous and arrogant I am and then in the same breath tell me you love me and always have.

Or maybe you've spent two years always looking for a fight around things you disagree with me on. I've played along - time and time again - listened to your lop-sided narrative, your false claims on facts, your incredibly emotionally charged responses... and you finally crossed a line. Maybe you used my kids names in a manner I'm not fond of... all the while smiling and telling me and those around me how much you are "for me" or "on my side."

Possibly you've been disrespectful, ugly, curt and hateful towards me and those I care about. Perhaps you've let your emotions control your communication - and that's never good. It's even possible that your hateful tunnel-vision has caused you to think my writing is strictly about YOU. Silly rabbit... those kind of tricks are for kids.

In these cases - and it's just been a few - you got to go. Unapologetically. Bye.


Trust me when I say there are a LOT of people who disagree with me.

And that is PERFECTLY OKAY.

But HOW we disagree matters a lot. How we communicate matters.

Some mediums are better for it than others - and some people are better at leveraging mediums than others.

As we watch the temperatures change, the sun set earlier and leaves start to color... I know this much...

I am looking forward to this change of season!

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

She Glows


This girl right here...

She is growing up WAY too fast and looking

Way too beautiful!


I mean seriously... it's almost as if she is literally glowing!


And then let the girl hang out with a dog and it's over!

Glow on, Meron... GLOW ON!

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Heart of Mebbie


Can I tell ya what the world needs?

More Mebbie!

That's EXACTLY what this world needs these days!


Her smile radiates and is contagious.

Her empathy is deep and puts her in unique positions to really feel what is going on around her.

Her compassion is strong.

Her love is undeniable.

I cannot believe I get to be her daddy.

Yep... the world needs more Mebbie.

Monday, September 17, 2018

Weighted Ankle Eating Time


You're wondering, "What the heck is that title all about?"

Aren't you?

Well - it's just like it says... dinner time with ankle weights.

Hey don't ask me... I got done with my run and got this little gem texted to me on my way home!

Keep marching to YOUR drummer, Z-Dogg!

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Growing Up


This guy right here...

Holy Moly!

He is growing up FAST!!!


It's like I blinked and he is twice as tall as he was yesterday...

(admittedly - half of that might be hair!)

I love the little man that he is becoming, but...

Don't rush outta childhood, Z-Dogg!

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Mebski Love


We were shooting some senior pictures for a friend tonight - and we came across a pretty cool graffiti covered old rail yard...

I LOVED the visuals!


I said "Mebbie - gimmee your best album cover pose!"

And she knocked it out the park!


MC Mebski Love... album dropping soon!

Way to keep it gangsta, Mebbie!

Friday, September 14, 2018

Always


Every now and then ya have a day like today (we'll get tot hat at some point here...) that leaves ya just looking for something to make ya smile.

Ya pop the SD card from the camera in - just looking for something...

ANYTHING...

And this girl never disappoints!

There is always something on there that brings a smile to my face... no matter what is going on!

Thanks, Meron... for being full of dependable silliness and joy!

Thursday, September 13, 2018

POOF!


I love when this cutie lets her hair be all natural like this!


It tends to bring out the silly in her!


And it definitely highlights the beauty!

I see your God-given gorgeousness, girl!

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Helmet Heads


Man... I totally love these two and the way they love each other!

Stay smiling, helmet heads!

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

The B-I-B-L-E


Came in tonight from the Y and found Mebbie on the couch reading her book... and Z-Dogg posted up in the chair with his nose in...

THE BIBLE!

Get at it, Zechie!


He absolutely loves the "Read with Me Bible - Storybook Bible for Children"

And I'm loving that he loves it!


The B-I-B-L-E... yes that's the book for Z!

Keep reading His word, Z-Dogg... keep reading His word!

You're honoring Him well, homie!

Monday, September 10, 2018

That Was Quick!


My people... I love this crew so much!


And in in a rare moment - I actually got to jump in a picture with them!

But what I LOVE the most is how quickly we could shift to this:


All it took was three little words:

"Gangsta poses, Hoffmans!"

And boom - there it was!

I love that silly resides right underneath the surface with this crew!

Stay silly and gangsta guys!

Sunday, September 9, 2018

His Beautiful Work


Man... I am one lucky dude.

I wake up every day to see His beautiful creations...


All around me... I can't help but take His handiwork in by just having my eyes open!


And those clouds and mountains are pretty beautiful too!

Thanks, God... for the constant reminders!

Saturday, September 8, 2018

"Way to Kick It In, Pele!"


Z-Dogg's first game of the Fall soccer season went down this morning...


And he was ready to get it going!


This little dude has always been a hustler...


But he stepped up his game this year!

So cool to see him out there running as fast as possible all over that field - he didn't slow down once!


Well - maybe ONCE - but it was all mommy and daddy's fault for sure!

We're ordering sports glasses this week for him!


We decided to go "NO GLASSES" for second half - and while we were worried he wouldn't be able to see...

He certainly found us and flashed a gigantic smile!


I ** THINK ** his team lost - but ya know what... it doesn't matter!

Good sportsmanship and fun are top priority for us (but a win is ALWAYS welcome!).

Way to Pele it out there, Z-Dogg!

Friday, September 7, 2018

Z-Dogg x 5


I can't believe another year is in the books and today we celebrated...

5 Years of Z-Dogg being in our family!

Woo-hoo!


This is one of my favorite pics of our entire family - it's our first "family picture" taken the day Zechie was brought up the escalator at ATL airport!

What day!

We were finally ALL together as a family!



Of course it wouldn't be a true "Zechie Day" if I wasn't showing off his incredible homecoming video because it is

AWESOME!


Zechie - you are a true joy and you bring so much life and happiness to the family.

We couldn't imagine our crew without ya!

Here's to many, many more Zechie Days!!

Thursday, September 6, 2018

This Is Us...


That's Zechie up there.

You know... Z-Dogg. Zechariah Yohannes. My bubba.

I love that little guy so much.

And so many of you guys claim to as well.

And it's you guys - the ones who really know us and really do love our little homie - who will understand this fear right here.

Each day that passes brings me closer to the potential of this reality...

IT COULD HAPPEN
He's 14 years old , it's dusk and it's getting cold,
He's running late, wasn't doing what he was told;

The game ran long - he knew he might be in trouble,
But sorta worth it - cuz he landed a triple double;

Friends are packing up, high fives and headed home,
He put in his headphones for the walk back home alone;

He paused for a second - questioning - as if "well should he?"
But it was dusk and he was cold so he pulled on his favorite hoodie;

He started walking, smiled and said aloud,
"Triple double!" Mom won't care but dad will be proud!

The route home was about a mile - long but nothing hard,
He could shorten it though - if he cut through a few yards;

He was running late - and the lock wasn't on the gate,
It made his path straight - honestly? No debate;

He ran through. Quietly shut the gate behind him,
"You're late" - a text alert from home just to remind him;

One more yard to go, Ms. Jones - she shouldn't care,
She always waved at him and admired his puffy hair;

But tonight he had in braids - Ms. Jones didn't recognize,
Saw him through her window - thought "he's here to burglarize!"

Rounding the last corner flashing lights bathed his street,
Cars parked, guns drawn, "Show us your hands and feet!"

Panic. All these thoughts ran through his head,
All the things his parents said to help him not end up dead;

Hands trembling. "Dad will help - and I know he's at home"
As he reached into his pocket to pull out his cellular phone;

And there he stood - drenched in streetlights feeling afraid,
Baggy shorts, headphones and a hoodie up over his braids;

He had already dialed as the phone came up near his ear,
"Dad... help!" - the last words his family would hear;

A judgment call was made. Or maybe a bias reaction,
Being brown, baggy and braided seems like the only infraction;

And that night... it was dusk and getting cold,
When 27 bullets ended the life of a 14 year old.


This is who we are... and these are the fears that we feel every day as we parent these awesome gifts from God towards an adulthood in a country that simply doesn't always see them the way we do.

So hate us. Protest the protests. Unfriend us, block us,turn your backs on us or stay dead silent on the whole thing.

But know that we simply cannot do that with you... because...

This is us.

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Bigfoot Riding a Unicorn


Okay, okay...

So it's no Sasquatch riding the back of a mythical one-horned horse creature... but it's CLOSE ENOUGH in rarity!

Break out the cameras - cuz this certainly doesn't happen often!

Way to show the love guys... fake it til ya make it!

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Believe in Something...


What a crazy and weird time is it to be alive these days, no?

I mean... I am sure every generation thinks "Man - these are the craziest times...." but seriously - we may own the true record.

But ya know what the silver lining is of being alive in the craziest of times?

We get to teach the goofballs ALL KINDS of amazing lessons in life.


And one of the bigger, more recent ones has been:

Believe In Something!

These guys have had a front row seat to the fact that sometimes - OFTENTIMES - you'll get put on blast when you stand up for something...

Do it anyways.

In the face of wrong... the face of injustice... the face of inequality...

Stand up for what is right!

Even if it means losing things. And you WILL lose things.


You might lose friends. You might lose fortune.

You might be mocked, laughed at and shunned.

Still... do it anyways.

Because when you stand up for what is right... when you create a voice for those not being heard... what you're doing is showing the world that your heart WORKS.

Your moral compass points in the right direction.

Your love for EVERYBODY shines through.

And ultimately - you bring honor and glory to HIM.

Guys... this world we live in is CRAZY and NUTTY and downright BONKERS sometimes... but you all can help set it stright!

Always believe in something - and know some things are worth sacrificing for!

Monday, September 3, 2018

We Survived!


Does she look tired?

Well - she probably is... and so was I because:

We survived 2.5 hours of math and science homework!

The Meronator missed some school last week due to a bug and she had some work to make up.

We hunkered down and a bunch of science and math later - we walked out of Starbucks... weary but alive.

I am really trying to find joy in some of the mundane things we're called to - and really to thank Him for allowing me these moments that will disappear so quickly and I'll never have again.

And today - it was pure joy to watch her lean in, struggle and then get it...

Watching her face reflect the moment something clicked in for her was one of the best things ever.

And as I watched that... it hit me... I GET TO DO THIS.

I don't HAVE to. I GET to.

The task is certainly a privilege and a blessing.

Meron.... your daddy loves you and is super proud of you!

Never stop learning, girl... NEVER STOP!