Recently in Family Category
"Here is the key question -- what better equips a man to confront a difficult and challenging world? Is it more tears? Or is it more toughness? Is it teaching men to be compassionate or to be objects of compassion? The vulnerable male's cry is "help me." The masculine male's quest is to become the helper....
"Boys will be boys, but they won't all become men. At their best, shorthand admonitions such as 'man up' or 'be a man' carry with them the weight of tradition and morality that makes a simple, though difficult request: Deny self. Don't indulge your weakness. Show courage. Avoid the easy path. Some men fall naturally into this role, for others it's much more difficult. The proper response to those who struggle is compassion. It's not to redefine masculinity for the minority.
"For a father, there are few more rewarding things in life than helping a son become a man, to watch him test himself in productive ways and to help him cultivate and demonstrate a protective spirit. Among the great gifts a father can give a son is a sense of masculine purpose, and no that purpose isn't a 'box,' it's a powerful force for good."
Family Life, a ministry of Campus Crusade for Christ, offers some creative ideas for the traditional gifts for each anniversary.
"Between music director Paul Phillips and a fine instrumental faculty, Southern Methodist University maintains a student orchestra worthy of reviewing as a professional ensemble. If Saturday night's Meadows Symphony Orchestra concert hadn't all the polish of the group's best, each school year--this one only a month old--starts with significant turnover of players....
"Strings were on their own in a warmly rendered Meditation on the Old Bohemian Chorale 'Saint Wenceslas,' by Dvorak's son-in-law Josef Suk. Although this lush, yearning music, from 1914, probably encoded a wish for Bohemian independence from Austro-Hungarian dominance, it could pass for the work of Vaughan Williams or several other early 20th-century English composers.
"The Dvorak [Cello Concerto] had a passionate and technically accomplished soloist in cellist Andres Diaz, one of the stars of SMU's Meadows School of the Arts faculty. From an aptly urgent beginning, the orchestra was in its glory here, Phillips giving the music just enough room to expand, contract and catch its breath.
"Paired clarinets and oboes played with expressive warmth, and the three horns displayed superb breath control. There were notable solos from Garrett Law (horn), Isaac Beu (clarinet) and Hannah Cruse (oboe).
"Alas, the acoustics of SMU's Caruth Auditorium disadvantage any soloist in the usual position left of the conductor, and Diaz was repeatedly swamped by the winds. Fine as Caruth is for smaller-scale music, it is too physically and sonically cramped for orchestral performances. An orchestra of this quality deserves better."
Perspective from Father Tad Pacholczyk of the National Catholic Bioethics Center:
"At the end of the day, the parental duty to influence in a positive way a child's upbringing around sexuality cannot be abdicated or delegated. Parents know their children in a personal and individual way and are able to determine their readiness for, and receptivity to, sexual information.
"Moreover, the reality of parental love toward their children enables a parent to say certain 'hard things' in love that may need to be said, in a manner that only a parent may effectively be able to say it."
Pediatrician Kate Land writes the dangers of insufficient sleep for children. Lack of sleep increases risk of car accidents, poor impulse control, obesity, depression. Dr. Land offers specific suggestions for parents regarding their children's bedtimes and sleep habits.
"Now, it is just as impossible, therefore, for a paedobaptist parent to be sure that his child is elect as it is for a Baptist parent. Paedobaptists may feel better about themselves by labeling the child a covenant member, but those children have no better standing before God than the children of Baptists....
"1) We view them as gifts of God, blessings of God, to be loved and served (Psalm 127:3).
"2) We view them as responsibilities that we have been given by God to bring up in the teaching and discipline of the Lord. That is, we are to lavish them with the Word of God and with love and with wisdom morning, noon, and night.
"3) We view them as objects of daily mercies in prayer in the hope that God would exercise his saving sovereign grace in their lives.
"4) We view them as little ones before whom God has charged us to rejoice so that they can see what it is like to taste that the Lord is good.
"5) Finally, we view them as little pilgrims in hope on the way to faith, woven into the fabric of relationships in the family and the church. And we have nothing to be ashamed of in this relationship with our children. It is every bit as hopeful for a good outcome of eternal covenant membership as any other way of viewing children."
Smoked sausage, green beans, wax beans, red potatoes, carrots.
Chicken, okra, kernel corn, yellow squash, green peppers, onion.
"My poor sleep hygiene was affecting my family, my work, and my physical health. And it was also affecting me spiritually....
"Sleep is a sign of trust and humility. But it's also a spiritual discipline. As D. A. Carson says, 'Sometimes the godliest thing you can do in the universe is get a good night's sleep--not pray all night, but sleep. I'm certainly not denying that there may be a place for praying all night; I'm merely insisting that in the normal course of things, spiritual discipline obligates you get the sleep your body need.'"
Carter offers some practical tips to improving sleep hygeine -- avoiding blue light, regular sleep and wake times, limiting alcohol and caffeine.
It's a joke, but it cuts close to home: "'We understand that the 1993 Camry was tremendously dependable, but, honestly, there's just no excuse for driving a 22-year-old car at this point,' said Toyota spokesman Haruki Kinoshita...."
Atlas Obscura's entry on the restored mid-century modern structure, designed by Bruce Goff, that has been restored and reopened in Bartlesville's Sooner Park. I remember climbing to the top of this when I was a kid, and I remember my dad and one of his brothers working their way around the Mobius Strip at the base of the tower. The last time I went up in the tower was 1978 when we were back at the park for my mother's high school reunion. One of the photos on this page shows the Mobius Strip structure and the tower in its prime.