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Much like your parents attic, treasured memories lay within. So, wipe the dust off my ruminations and remembrances, sit back and enjoy!

A weekend at home

If you’ve been keeping up with my BLOG, you’d know that the weekend before last ended the baseball season around here, leaving this as the first weekend in awhile that we didn’t have to run somewhere for an all-day tournament. So, Saturday, Lisa and I slept in then got up and decided to run into town to go to the farmers market, the meat market and the fruit market. We never did make it to the farmers market, but found some good deals on fruits and veggies at the fruit market. We came home and I ran back to town with Trevor as he wanted to go to the bookstore and get a few books and spend some time with me...yeah, this is the same teenager, who not that long ago was angry at the world! After going to the bookstore, we went to a favorite restaurant of Lisa’s downtown…Trev and I ate and joked and laughed and it felt good to see the ‘old’ Trevor back…I hope he stays for a good long while.

When we got home, Lisa and I worked on the house; she got the basement living room cleaned up, Trev and I brought the last piece of furniture down from the garage…the recliner! And as Lisa finished up, I went out and started to breakdown the 100 lbs of cardboard boxes flat and then bound them together like two small bales. We also hung up more pictures and just generally continued with settling in. I grilled steaks along with some veggies and grilled some fruit too! I’d never grilled fruit before…it was yummy!

Lisa and I were sitting on the deck the other night while Kyle and Hope played in the backyard. Listening to them play make-believe (Kyle was the Ninja master and Hope was his student), I heard Hope say, ‘Master, I want to learn more…teach me some more moves!’ Lisa and I laughed and I thought to myself…’The kids are happier than I’ve seen them in some time.’ I voiced this thought to Lisa and it came to me that for the past year, we were ALWAYS gone on weekends. Either Lisa and the boys would come to our place or we’d go to hers. It's nice...no, it's been GREAT being together on the weekends and not having to run to see each other. In spite of the petty bickering or picking...pretty normal sibling issues...we see happiness, we see silliness and more importantly, we see everyone bonding together as a family! Trevor, Nick, Vinny and I went over to the back ball field and spent about an hour just hitting golf balls. We had a great time laughing, teasing and just having simple fun.

Here's the thing...in amongst our simple family fun, I learned something important; in this age of PSP's, Ipods, IMs, Face Book and 200 + cable channels, kids still value simple play and personal connection with their mom and dad. The games systems, music players and TV shows can only offer them momentary escapism. We as parents can offer them SO much more...a reality without the need to 'escape'! And parents? The payback on this investment is immediate...in the smile on your son's face or glint in your daughter's eye. Now THAT, my friend, is priceless...

~ V

3 comments:

jacquelynkollar said...

Hey Vince :) It's Jackie. I hope you're doing well as well as the family. I get so happy to read yours and Lisa's blogs. I actually check about every other day to see for updates.

Trevor seems like he had been in the same stage I was stuck in for some time in high school. Shortly before I graduated, I realized what a mistake I was making and spent more time with my mom than I had in years and now she's one of my best friends. (Being out in Vegas while she's still in Minnesota is soooo hard!!)

You're a great father.. and I would have loved to have a father like you. Just thought you should know. :)

Jackie

Vince Howard said...

Jackie,
Thanks for the note! Lisa says to tell you hello, that she loves you guys and hopes that you are taking care of each other. That was one of the nicest things anyone has ever said to me...at times I don't feel like I'm a very good father, but it's at those times that Lisa reminds me of all the little things I do for my kids...things that a lot of fathers don't do, so I know that I try and I pray that God will continue to lead me in guiding our new family.

V

jacquelynkollar said...

You deserved to hear it from an outside source. I can only imagine how... not difficult but yeah, difficult... blending two families together can be. You are both lucky to have eachother and to have such great kids. And I'm certain that you are both doing a great job.

For 5 or so years of my childhood my dad wasn't much of a part of my life. And I know Justin has had his ups and downs with father figures.

So take it from someone who'd notice.

We are doing well and trying to take care of eachother as best we can. I think we do pretty well. ;)

Tell EVERYONE that we say hi and send our love. And that we miss you all (and MN in general) like crazy!!

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