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Relationships

The 5 Directives of Friendly Debate

Disagreement can enhance a friendship if you handle it the right way.

Debate doesn’t have to get personal.

Facebook has had me shaking my head the last few weeks. Silently witnessing discord between “friends” with words driving wedges between them. Social media has that unique ability to make people feel protected while being exposed. Much like an outraged driver who’s inside his car yet completely visible.  Some contributors forget that the internet is not a cloak but a spotlight.

During the Republican and Democratic National Conventions, Facebook reminded me of a hurricane. While hurricane Isaac was threatening the RNC, another storm was brewing on Facebook. The more comments and “likes” on brutal political commentary, the more the storm gained momentum. Like fanning a fire, posts turned to vicious personal attacks. Not toward their enemies. This was friendly fire.

I believe debate can be constructive, beneficial and enjoyable. Especially amongst friends. Disagreement can stimulate ideas, widen your horizons, and help solidify strong relationships.

An evening out with another couple where conversation goes beyond “Who won the soccer game?” to “What do you think about a flat tax?” creates an engaging discussion that enriches friendship.

We don’t compromise our values by respecting others’ views.  As long as we follow these directives. Read more

Tips to Tact

One of the greatest skills you can master is tactfulness.

Sticks and stones may break your bones but words can crush you.

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Peel Yourself

Peel back the layers and then solve your problem.

I often wonder if I resumed being a therapist today, would I rely more on my college degrees or my wisdom from living 48 years? I know. That’s laughable.

There’s at least one concept I did learn in class that seems to have stuck. Here’s a jump start to solving your own (or someone else’s) problems. Read more

Ladies First- WinKC Women’s Triathlon

Next time you want to feel like you belong, sign up for an all women's triathlon.

Women come in all shapes and sizes. Some are strong and others struggle. Some are toned and some jiggle. Some are tweens and some are grandmas.

Many wouldn’t be caught dead being seen in their underwear but their butt covered in Lycra, no problem! Read more

Love Notes

A love note is the perfect way to communicate affection.

My first love note was in 5th grade. I can remember the thrill of reading a few words on wide-lined notebook paper. As good as it gets.

Have love notes been replaced with texting (sexting)? Hopefully not. Love notes can send a powerful message to those you love because they meet a basic human need.

The need to be appreciated. 

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Sid’s Sense- Portrait of a Passionate Life

A grandfather speaks to his youngest grandchild about how to lead a good life.

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Parents Need To “Shape” Up

Invert the triangle and you'll be headed in the right direction.

If a parenting manual came with every newborn, I’m not sure it would be that helpful. Written directions telling me how to raise the perfect kid. Heck, I don’t have enough patience to read directions on a help screen! I’m more of a “click it until I get it” kinda gal. I always find exceptions in instructions, something missing, or “I already made the wrong turn so what do I do now?!”

Some of us need cause and effect scenarios in plain sight. Kids are perfect teachers. Their feedback is instant, in your face, relentless and uncensored.

I prefer to talk guidelines and strategies when it comes to raising our offspring. Leaves you room for interpretation and adaptation. Every family is unique. Every child is different. But we all want them out of diapers and paying their own bills eventually.

Here’s a principle that may help you transition from wiping snotty noses to handing over car keys. Read more

Sid’s Sense- Lingo & Laughter

Use humor and the right vocabulary to snap tension, ignite fellowship, and cope with life’s stings.

View previous posts in this series, Sid’s Sense.

Around the year 2000, my mother was diagnosed with a progressive illness called multiple system atrophy. It started with severe bouts of hypotension (low blood pressure) and progressed to the point she could not walk or take care of herself. It was heartbreaking. My father, her husband of 52 years, knew this might just be the biggest fight he would ever endure. Determined to find a way to cope, ease the stress, and remain proactive in her healthcare, he chose his words carefully. Read more

Miss Fix-It

Sometimes it's better to just let the feelings be.

I ran a 5k race this over the weekend with my husband and teenage daughter.

This distance is short but that’s also why it’s so tough. You have to be a racehorse ready to roll as soon as the gate opens. There’s something magical about being in the midst of other runners that makes you suffer more.  Misery hurts but also propels you to the finish line sooner.

For all practical purposes, the morning went well. We walked away with 3 medals- well, actually 2. One participant’s triumph turned our victorious morning on its head. Read more

Under the Mask

A Dedication to Father's Everywhere

Under the mask is a first time Dad holding a newborn wondering how he is going to be a good enough father.

Under the mask is a single Dad trying to figure out what a Mom would do in this situation.

Under the mask is a devoted father praying his little leaguer hits the ball so he won’t have to convince him he’s still a winner.

Under the mask is a strong man in uniform, filthy from dirt and sweat, yearning desperately to see his family again.

Under the mask is a jobless father in despair telling his family it will be alright and things will come around real soon.

Under the mask is a salesman worn out from working under the pressure of a monolith when his wife and kids just want him home.

Under the mask is a distraught father comforting his broken-hearted daughter telling her the boy didn’t deserve her anyway.

Let’s face it. We appreciate our Dad’s masks.

This certainty that they will be there to lean on, to look up to.

        This knowing that they will remain strong when we fall apart.

This faith that they’ll throw the rescue line when we’ve fallen too far.

        This expectation that they have the map if we just follow their directions.

This belief that when we don’t feel good enough, we’re good enough for them.

To all the Dad’s out there, Thank You.  You matter.  A lot.

You are our anchor that only lets us drift so far.

"Fatherhood doesn't build character. It reveals it." Skitz