My Father Liked Baseball

My Father Liked Baseball

I don’t know if my Dad liked baseball all that much, but I know he loved me. My fondest memories as a boy were when my dad would take time in the evenings to play baseball with us. We lived a mile out of town surrounded by cornfields. We had a nice yard for playing baseball with a row of evergreen trees that served well as an outfield wall. Some of them were overgrown and occasionally we would lose a ball in the trees or even in the field beyond it if the corn was tall.

My dad spent his days working at the bank in town accepting and rejecting loan requests, mostly to local farmers. He enjoyed spending evenings in the yard mowing or tending to the apple orchard. He would have us kids, there were three of us, help with yard work if something needed to be done. If it was still light out when the chores were done and if I begged hard enough, he usually had time to play some baseball.

Did you ever see the movie, The Rookie (2002), with Dennis Quaid as Jim Morris? I loved baseball about as much as he loved baseball, except, I had a dad who would play baseball with me.

My dad would often come home during his lunch hour and, in the summer, when I was home from school, would play catch with me for ten or fifteen minutes after he ate before he had to go back to work.

My dad was always willing to invest in us in pursuit of our interests. For example, when I joined the Boy Scouts, my dad participated as an adult leader of our troop. In only five years in scouting, I had earned my Eagle Scout award. Most boys, if they even get there, take seven or eight years to get it. It wasn’t easy and my dad encouraged me to stick with it when I got tired of it. Earning my Eagle Scout helped set the pace for me in life in pursuing other longer term goals.

This was what I was most proud of as a boy and my dad was there to help me get it. He was a great example to me in this way. I was fortunate to have a dad who cared so much and loved me so much. Dads are important. Not only to their kids but to their community and to their country. God created man to lead a family and He designed families to build nations. Don’t forget howpodcast-art-1400 important you are dad.

Where’s my glove? I need to go out and play catch with my son!

Time for Catch    by Phil Conrad

www.intentionalparenting.net

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Daddy – by Travis Simpkins, age 20, Fulton County Jail, Atlanta

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Manly Fathers (pt 1) — Who Are You?

God Made You

In our quest to find out what a Manly Father is and who they are, we will need toThe first thing we need to first understand that God made man, and God made woman.

How To Help Teens Remember Their Worth

How To Help Teens Remember Their Worth

As the father of a 16-year-old daughter, I’ve had some time to accumulate both parenting wins and parenting fails. I’m nowhere near perfect obviously but have given it my all. Something I have always strived for in my role as “Father” is to teach my children about their true worth. Now that I have a teenage daughter, this seems more important than ever.

In a recent survey, 95% of teens reported to having felt inferior at some point in their lives. Many reasons why were also given but the top three of those listed were:

  • Appearance (59%)
  • Ability in some activity (49%)
  • Intelligence (38%)

In the same survey, almost half of the teens questioned reported they normally have “low” self-esteem.

As parents, we would do anything for our kids. Our hearts shatter when they experience difficulty and pain, especially when they feel lesser when compared to their peers. We see the whole world in them and want our children to see it in themselves too. To help them overcome these feelings, I have found there are two important areas to focus on with my teenage daughter.

Help Teens Make Time for Mental Health Exercises

In today’s world, many people are so focused on physical health and intelligence. Some even obsess over these areas, shutting out any kind of uplifting mindfulness. Our kids need resources that help them to be optimally healthy when it comes to their emotional well being. They simply are not taught in school what it takes to have great mental health.

As parents, we need to step in and supply them with some resources. Here’s a few ideas to get you started:

  • Daily meditation/prayer/quiet time to connect their soul and mind, allowing teens to completely unplug.
  • Journaling thoughts and gratitude can help focus minds on living in the moment, instead of living through other people’s curated moments on social media.
  • Worksheets and exercises that guide the teen into thinking about self-identity and improve self-worth.

Remind Teens That No One is Better Than Anyone Else

We consciously make an effort to teach our children that no one is better than them as a human, and on the flip side, they are better than no one else.

In our family, each member knows that they are enough. They are worthy of love and acceptance from the people around every day, simply because they exist. Each of us is unique and has different gifts to offer the world we live in. The world is so quick to persuade individuals of who they are not that we often forget how special we are.

By simply taking deliberate time to have these conversations and taking advantage of teachable moments, our kids will not only feel our love and concern for their well being but also truly come to know a sense of self-worth in this crazy world.

Enabling Practices: Stop Letting Your Kids Just "Get It Out Of Their System" Early

Enabling Practices: Stop Letting Your Kids Just “Get It Out Of Their System” Early

Enabling Practices: Stop Letting Your Kids Just “Get It Out Of Their System” Early. I believe that as fathers, we always want what’s best for our children. We strive to provide and protect our children to the best of our abilities. While we may make some mistakes along the way, our hearts are usually in the right place.

Maybe that’s why most of us struggle with setting boundaries for our children. We hate the idea of upsetting our kids because we love them, and we don’t want them to get angry at us. We somehow mistakenly believe that this will hurt their esteem or damage our relationship with them.

Parenting Traps To Avoid

So we start to let things slide. We become way too permissive, and we even start enabling bad behavior. These phrases start creeping into our conversations:

“They’re just kids, it’ll be okay.”

“Kids will be kids.”

“I’m just letting them get it out of their system.”

It all seems logically sound — allow your children to have their way and get a certain behavior out of their system. We think that if they’re allowed to eat, drink or indulge to their heart’s content, act out as often as they wish or even drink and party as hard as they want, they’ll eventually get tired of this behavior when they’re older and stop of their own accord.

Why This Parenting Concept Is Flawed

I’ll outline why this parenting method sadly falls short:

  1. In Philippians 4:8, we are instructed to dwell on whatever is true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable and worthy of praise. By allowing kids to “just get it out of their system” we’re encouraging them to do the opposite of what God wants. Instead of having our children practice good behavior, we’re enabling inappropriate conduct. Then we get surprised when they end up being undisciplined, entitled and disrespectful.
  2. Children thrive where there are rules and discipline. Sometimes, we parents forget that rules, limits, and boundaries are actually healthy for children. Parental boundaries help children feel safe and cared for while setting limits helps them know what behavior is expected of them. Limits also teach kids how to socialize with others and how to cope with uncomfortable feelings. If you allow your children to always get away with bad behavior, they’ll never develop the self-discipline, restraint, and self-control necessary to navigate the real world.
  3. It undermines the parent-child relationship. Our children trust us to keep them safe. Letting them run wild sends a subtle message that we really don’t care about their well-being. Over time, they’ll stop trusting us to keep them healthy and safe. We, therefore, shouldn’t be surprised when they start acting out as a way of seeking proof that we care about them.

In Proverbs 22:6, we are reminded to train up our children in the way they should go and they’ll not depart from it even when they’re old. We parents have a duty to not only nurture our children but to also teach them how to make good choices in their lives. This is what being a good father entails and it’s what we should all strive towards.


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Manly Training is still going to be EXACTLY what it is now — New Posts every Tuesday and new Podcasts every Monday. Patreon perks are simply that: extra perks!

I have big plans for Manly Training– including a book AND a YouTube channel.

Your pledge will help me continue to put the considerable time and effort into each and every post that makes Manly Training what it is.

So thank you from the bottom of my heart. I pray every day for each and every one of you who take the time to read my words. You are a blessing.

Thank You!

 



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Adoption From Foster Care: The Joy of a Growing Family

Adoption From Foster Care: The Joy of a Growing Family

Foster Care Institute​ Dr. John DeGarmo

The adoption of three children from foster care has led to so many adventures, challenges, joys, and experiences for my family.  Just because we signed some paper work, making the children legally ours, does not mean that the new discoveries and challenges fade away.  On the contrary, we are learning new things about these children on an almost daily basis.  Perhaps the greatest discovery my family and I are learning is that the amount of love one can hold in a heart never seems to end.

SOURCE: http://www.drjohndegarmofostercare.com/blog/adoption-from-foster-care-the-joy-of-a-growing-family

Adoption From Foster Care: The Joy of a Growing Family
Adoption From Foster Care: The Joy of a Growing Family

Over the years, my own family has been blessed with the gift of adopting three children from foster care.  These have been joyous events for my family, but there were also times of great anxiety, too, when it appeared that the adoptions might not go through as first planned. Fortunately, all three adoptions did take place, and my wife and I are now loving parents of six children.  Three of these are biological, three are adopted.  Three children are considered “white” by today’s society, while the other three are considered “black.”  In our home, though, there is no difference in color, as we believe that we are all the same color; just different shades of God’s skin. 

When a Child is Placed in Foster Care​

When a child is placed into foster care, the initial goal is to have the child reunified with his birth parents, or a member of his biological family. To be sure, the initial intent of placing a child into care is that the placement be a temporary, with reunification the main objective.  Yet, there are those instances when reunification is not possible, and the child is placed through the court system for adoption.

Of the over 415,000 children placed in foster care in 2014, it is estimated that 108,000 of these foster children became eligible for adoption. Sadly, only around 51,000 of these children were adopted during that year, with over half of these children being adopted by foster parents, with the rest being adopted by family members, and a small percentage being adopted by non relatives.

Why Foster Care?

There are several reasons why a foster child might be placed up for adoption.  First, the custody rights of the birth parents are voluntarily terminated; secondly, the custody rights of the birth parents are terminated by a court order; and third, the child is up for adoption due to the death of birth parents. 
 
As foster parents, there are many reasons why we are the ideal choice to adopt a foster child.   Many times when a child from foster care has his rights terminated, he has already been living in a loving and stable home with his foster family.  When we care for foster children, we raise them as our own for an extended amount of time, meeting his needs, and nurturing him since he was removed from his birth parent’s home. 

Special Needs and Strong Bonds

Perhaps you are a foster family that cares for children with special needs.  If so, you are the ones most familiar with these needs, and have gained valuable insight and resources how to best meet them and care for your foster child.   Often times, we have formed strong, loving, and important attachments with our foster children while they are placed in our home.  If you are like me, our foster children sometimes become a member of our family, and when they are able to legally stay with us, there is a time of rejoicing.  

I must admit to you, though, that sometimes the adoption process can end in grief.  My wife and I have also suffered from two failed adoptions; two adoptions from the foster care system that did not work out, leaving my entire family confused, and in grief.  We are not alone in this, as so many families have suffered from this, as well. 

A Forever Family

Just because a foster child finds a forever family when he is adopted does not mean that it will be smooth sailing afterwards, or that there will not be difficulties or challenges ahead.  Help your former foster child and now permanent member of your family by working with him to understand why the adoption took place, and why he has a new family.

Yet, the internal process for all involved can be a challenging one, especially for your child.  They may have a difficult time accepting the fact that they will never return to live with their biological parents or birth family members again.  It is necessary for you, as an adoptive parent, to allow your child time to grieve the loss of connection with his birth family.  He may very well need time to experience the stages of grief before he fully transfer attachment from his birth family to yours.

Feelings of Loss

 Even though he may have lived in your home for some time as a foster child, he will likely re-experience feelings of loss during the adoption process. Allow him to discuss his feelings of grief and loss with you as you listen attentively to him, validating his feelings and emotions. If he should ask any questions about his biological parents or birth family, it is important that you answer them as honestly as you can.   At the same time, help him to transfer attachment from his birth family to yours by ensuring that he is included in all aspects of your family, and when possible, incorporate parts of his previous family’s traditions into your own, as it helps him to feel more comfortable.  After all, his birth family gave him his appearance and gender, his intelligence, his temperament, talents, and of course, his life.  These, of course, will never change. 

3 Adoptions

The adoption of three children from foster care has led to so many adventures, challenges, joys,

Faith and Foster Care
Faith and Foster Care

and experiences for my family.  Just because we signed some paper work, making the children legally ours, does not mean that the new discoveries and challenges fade away.  On the contrary, we are learning new things about these children on an almost daily basis.  Perhaps the greatest discovery my family and I are learning is that the amount of love one can hold in a heart never seems to end.  My family has not only grown in size from these adoptions, they have grown in love, as well.  Surely, my cup runneth over.  Surely, I am blessed.

-Dr. John

Want to know more about Adoption through Foster Care?
​Order your signed copy of  Dr. DeGarmo’s Faith and Foster Care: How We Impact God’s Kingdom.  This is the book that is changing the face of foster care across the nation.

Author

Dr. John DeGarmo
Dr. John DeGarmo

Dr. John DeGarmo is an international foster care consultant, author, speaker, and most importantly, a foster and adoptive father.  He has been a foster parent for 14 years, with over 50 children coming through his home. He is the author of many books, including the book Faith and Foster Care: How We Impact God’s Kingdom.  Get it HERE.

Get More Articles and Stuff About National Adoption Month Here:

A Boy’s Life – National Adoption Month

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Truth time: Manly Training Ministries is a full time job – on top of my Area Manager Job and being a husband and a Father! I easily put 30+ hours a week into creating the content for Manly Training– whether it’s dreaming up posts, creating art images, responding to emails and comments, and managing my social media feeds.

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The treehouse

Build a Treehouse with the Kids Before it’s Too Late!

Have you ever built a treehouse? What would you do if your son asked you to build him a treehouse? Quality time with your children is important, but how much of that quality time are you really giving them? Listen to this heart-wrenching podcast and be motivated to spend more time with your sons and daughters.

Help us Build Our Treehouse too!

Truth time: Manly Training Ministries is a full time job – on top of my Area Manager Job and being a husband and a Father! I easily put 30+ hours a week into creating the content for Manly Training– whether it’s dreaming up posts, creating art images, responding to emails and comments, and managing my social media feeds.

There are two ways to help me do this!

1) By donating directly through PayPal –>  Donate Button with Credit Cards

2) by joining me over at Patreon!

Patreon allows you to pledge as little as $1 a month, and in return you’ll get some pretty cool rewards, ranging from your name and blog on my MTM VIP page, exclusive content, and PODCAST VERSIONS of my posts!

MTM Won’t Change, I Promise.

But don’t worry! MTM is still going to be EXACTLY what it is now — New Posts every Tuesday and new Podcasts every Monday. Patreon perks are simply that: extra perks!

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Your pledge will help me continue to put the considerable time and effort into each and every post that makes Manly Training what it is.

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