Saturday, April 21, 2018

My Late Night Posse


I'mma be honest here - there just isn't a really super-enforced bedtime 'round these parts on the weekend!

That's why ya could find us all hunkered down on the couch at 10:30 PM getting ready to start watching "Lost in Space" together!


This girl wasn't feeling the greatest tonight - but she was determined to stay awake!


This girl is beaming smiles no matter if it's 8:00 AM or 10:30 PM.

All smiles - all the time!


And this little homie was just SUPER STOKED to not being going to bed before everybody else!

I love impromptu family time - doesn't even matter what we're doing - as long as we're all doing it!

Danger, Will Robinson... DANGER!

Good times, Guys!

Friday, April 20, 2018

Secret Church 2018


We just wrapped up Secret Church 2018 and got home...

Some great stuff on "Cults and Counterfeit Gospels" - Lord knows we've been around enough of that over the past 2 years to really spot it when we see it!

Platt was his usual bold self in his teaching - as he took on many topics that some folks wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole!

"If you add anything to the Gospel - you lose everything in the Gospel."
Good, good stuff!

But the real troopers were these goofballs right here!

Thanks little homies for letting us muscle through 6 hours of pretty intense teaching!

We won't do it again for a year - I promise!

Now go get some sleep!

Thursday, April 19, 2018

A Police Officer


Zechie had to go to school today and do a mini-oral report where he got up and said what he wanted to be when he grew up.

He used to want to be a football.

Not a football player... but an actual football.

But this time... complete with Laura's grandfather's official issue police hat to wear as a prop - he told about how he wanted to be a police officer when he grew up.

And he was going to be a REALLY GOOD one too!

That's what he claims!


When asked why he wanted to be that when he grew up - his answer was simple...

"So I can help keep people safe and change the world!"

KIDDING

His real answer was "So I can ride a motorcycle..."

Goals baby. Goals.

Keep your eyes on the prize, Zechie!

You can be WHATEVER you wanna be, Z-Dogg!

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Just Because...


Sometimes... ya gotta bring a little something home for your special girls for absolutely no reason at all...

Just Because!

On the way home from work today I felt compelled to stop off and buy some flowers for two of my favorite little ladies on the planet!

I called each of them over separately to give them to them...


"But why daddy - what are these for?" asked Meron...

I just smiled and said "Cuz I love ya so much and you should know that!"


Mebbie was just beaming from ear to ear as she grabbed them and smelled them...

"They're beautiful and they smell great daddy... thank you so much!"

Big, wide beaming smiles.

They didn't do anything different today than yesterday... but today... they got the flowers they deserved!

Truth be told... they deserve 'em EVERY day.

Daddy loves you girls... JUST BECAUSE!

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Better Than the Movie!


Let's be honest... this HAS to be better than the movie!

Cuz that won't be hard to do...

Meron - just a few dozen pages in - already said:

"Daddy... this is nothing like the movie - it's already better!"
Been trying to tell her - her mind's eye is WAY MORE CREATIVE than any director and his or her camera!

Keep reading - keep imagining!

Monday, April 16, 2018

Cosmic Bowling


This one here - she is ALWAYS full of plans.

Need something to do? Let her know and she'll be MORE than happy to plan out your day... your week... your month... your year even!

This Sunday's plan?

Straight from the church parking lot to the bowling alley, people!


With the lasers and fog machines kicking - it was time to get our bowl on!


The goofballs joined the "kids bowl free" program for the summer that allows them to bowl for free and only pay for shoes... and they LOVE it!


And the dude at the counter let mom and dad bowl for free too and only charged us kids rates for the shoes...


So it was an hour of rolling heavy balls down the lane...

But no matter the score or how many pins we knocked down (or didn't knock down)...

We all had a blast!


Any time spent with this crew - no matter where - is my idea of fun!

Way to bowl, Camp Hoffman!

Sunday, April 15, 2018

His Name is "Frank"


"Daddy... there's a surprise on your desk!" he said...

And sure enough... indeed there was!

A green man with crazy eyes!


Z-Dogg was pretty stoked about his creation he made in art class at school...

"His name is Frank, Daddy..." he declared.


"I even labeled him for you."

And there it was - bold and plain under his own name...

"FRANK"

I love that my desk has been the repository for artwork and creativity ever since Meron was a little munchkin and it has just kept on keeping on!

Z-Dogg... I absolutely LOVE Frank in all his green and splendid glory!

Never stop creating, homie!

Saturday, April 14, 2018

More Than Sisters


Laura and I were tag-teaming dinner prep and we looked in and saw these two watching a little TV just like this...

I LOVE IT SO MUCH!

They couldn't be more different when it comes to how God made 'em - but each one of them needs the other in a whole slew of special ways.

I love that they are WAY more than sisters.

They're best friends, partners, defenders, homies... the list goes on and on and on.

I am so thankful that they have each other... so thankful.

Never let this change, girls!

Friday, April 13, 2018

She Does the Right Thing Because It's the Right Thing To Do


Just when ya think you're totally screwing up this whole parenting thing - ya get an invitation to an assembly at school because your big girl is winning an "Integrity Award"

What, what, what?

That's right - the Meronator won a character award at school with an emphasis on "integrity."

I couldn't be more proud of this big girl... she's a born leader and while parenting that can be downright terrifying... she is turning out pretty darn good!


Her teacher wrote some pretty amazing things about her - and it is ALWAYS awesome to know the characteristics you know exist in your kids are being seen by others around them!

Way to go Meron!

Keep shining bright for HIM!

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Her Therapy Human


This dog right here... she is a TRIP.

Easily the most neurotic dog I have ever met!

We love her to death but she's a weirdo...


The precious little thing is freaked out by just about everything... open doors, boxes, the wind, lack of wind, noises, lack of noises...

You name it - she's probably kinda freaked out by it.

But ya know what calms her down?

Like... ALL the way down?

Meron...

She's her therapy human.


If I'm being completely honest though... Cider provides Meron the same kind of peace!

I love that they have each other and I love their relationship... it's the best!

Meron and Cider Forever!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

My Rock


Who is your rock? Ya know - the one ya lean on, the one who stabilizes ya, the one who is a foundation that doesn't get shaky?

This girl right here is my rock.

And I certainly don't write about her enough but man do I appreciate her!


Look... I know being married to me can't be easy.

I'm opinionated, open, truthful (to a fault some would say). People hate me for the things I say or write and then she gets hated "by proxy."

I think I get this look a lot!


But ya know what?

Nobody has EVER had my back like this girl does!

EVER!

She supports me in everything and I know without a doubt she would walk through fire for me.


Laura - I don't say it enough - but I appreciate you and love you more than you could ever imagine!

Luckiest dude alive... that's me!

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Two of My Favorites


These two right here...

It doesn't get any better than them!

One is growing in to the person God made her to be and the other one is guiding her every step...

Sometimes that means they butt heads - and that's when I get to be a referee - but the love they have for each other is palpable.

I am forever grateful for both of these lives He built!

Two of my absolute favorites!

Monday, April 9, 2018

And All Was Right Again...


While I was super excited that these ladies got to escape for a two day get-a-away to bond and have some awesome time together...

Let's be honest - Camp Hoffman missed 'em!

This place just doesn't feel right without our entire crew around!

But today they returned... and all was right in the universe again!

Welcome back, ladies! We missed you!

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Undercover Trail Runner


This little man has been begging me for a while to go up the Incline with me... and so today - with the ladies all away - it was time!

And even though that silly little "church" from our past chastised us for it back in the day and labeled us "anti-church" - this was where we held church today (and we're far from anti-church... our conversation revolved around God most of the time!)...

He was confident - kept saying "I got this, daddy!"

And those who know - the Incline and Barr Trail ain't no little walk in the park!

That pic up there was him at the "Bailout Point" - a spot about 2/3 of the way to the top where you can decide to call it quits and hit a trail down that connects to it.

There was NO way he was throwing in the towel!


To give it some perspective - that's what he had already conquered!


And this was him at the very top - after a spontaneous round of applause for him from all the climbers at the top (this community is the best!)...


We threw our long sleeves back on while we munched on Lara Bars cuz the wind was crazy up there!


And Z-Dogg just kept saying, "Daddy - it's so beautiful up here!"

He's right.

Then we headed down and that's when he shocked me!

Dude was determined to run... and he did GREAT! For like the first 1.25 miles he was CRUISING...

I had to slow him down as we neared some of the rockier spots - but his foot placement, his speed and his trail etiquette was all on point!

A couple other runners even called it out "He looks like a natural!"

I was a super proud daddy, no doubt!


A little over 2 miles down we lost the long sleeves again and stopped to take in some more views...

"Daddy... LOOK at all those trees!"

I loved watching him be in awe of God's majestic handiwork out there!


And while homeboy may have been tired... he NEVER lost his goofiness!

All in all - he went up the Incline in 63 minutes and came down Barr Trail to the car in 62 minutes.

A pretty darn impressive outing for a 6 year old and an amazing one on one time with my dude...

Best church service in a while!

Z-Dogg... when do we go back, homie?

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Passport 2 Purity


After circling up as a family at Starbucks and praying for God to be right in the middle of the whole weekend - we sent the Camp Hoffman ladies off to 2 nights in a hotel so that Laura can walk through the Passport2Purity Journey with Meron and Mebbie!

Yes, the growing up so fast part sucks!

But we weren't about to sit on our butts and just let it happen.

After some really super honest, authentic and candid conversations with Meron about stuff that was being said and talked about at school during lunch, on the playground and even in class... we knew it was time.

I'm digging this kit we got. It says:

"Your child begins the journey into adolescence in a world of sexting, bullying, online stalking and moral defiance. Innocence is under attack, and you cannot win the battle with a single awkward talk or a strict set of rules. The primary defense for your child is a strong relationship with you and with God.

Passport2Purity was developed to assist you in building heart-to-heart communication with your preteen while laying a foundation of purity that will prepare them for the turbulent years ahead. Through the shared listening experience, object lessons and guided conversations of a P2P weekend getaway, you can set your son or daughter on a journey of moral integrity-and strengthen the bond between you."
I love it! You can check it out more here.

And they got right to it with the first session being listened to in the car on the way from Starbucks to the hotel.


I love that Laura was keeping me updated throughout the day with texts and pictures!

There are several sessions of things to listen to... followed up with journaling...


There are activities that go right along with it as well.


And it's not designed to be all cerebral and boring... part of the deal is time spent together with Mommy and each other!

And if that means a Tequila Sunrise (with no Tequila) at the hotel bar before dinner and swimming - then so be it!


After a few hours of swimming - they headed back to the room and jumped into one of the gifts we gave them for the weekend - some comfy "chill-axing clothes" that declare loudly what they are made of:

BEAUTY - STRENGTH - LOVE - GRACE - TRUTH

It's so true and we want them to be confident in who they are, whose they are and what He made them of!


They ended the night with a little Uno Attack and a bunch of smiles.

They have another FULL DAY of sessions tomorrow but the joy I am seeing on their faces is telling me this was so right.

Laura texted me several times simply saying: "They are so smart. So, so smart..."

And don't worry about the Z-Dogg and me. We're gonna survive.

While he was bummed that he didn't get to go... i told him:

"Dude... don't be upset that you're not a prepubescent girl... let's go get some Chick Fil A!"

That seemed to help out a LOT!


That and a new Black Panther action figure!

Meron and Mebbie and Mommy... you guys are missed around here - but we're super excited for what this weekend represents and how you all are being so intentional about leaning into God to feel, know and understand what He built you for.

My babies are growing up!

Friday, April 6, 2018

Friday Night on Whole30


We are on DAY 2 of another round of Whole30 that the whole crew is doing.

So when I came down to tuck the girls in at what would be considered an EARLY bedtime for a Friday night - this is what I found!

Pulling sugar outta your system will WEAR YOU OUT!


This thing ain't no joke... and anybody who has done it knows how those first 7-10 days can feel!

Worn out. Cranky. Exhausted.


Even the dog was DONE-ZO and she is on her same diet!


Whole30... putting kids to sleep with ease!

Way to go guys... and hang in there cuz...

Tiger's Blood is COMING SOON!