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Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Hiatus Complete

We've been out for a while with the aforementioned work and school challenges. I am happy to announce that I am no longer working the third shift, and have been hired on by my church as the adminstrator and pastoral care associate! This will allow me to assist the church in an area of talent with things (administration) and with people (pastoral care). Furthermore, I will be able to spend more time with my wife and oldest son, as well as net more overall sleep, reduce total travel time, and increase study opportunities. All in all, even though the move is a pay cut, we are excited about the change.

I recently had the opportunity to spend three days and two night with all three children, minus Mrs. Hammer. I survived the ordeal, as did they, and I leave some advice for Dads who are presented with this kind of opportunity:

1) Get them out of the house. No, not just into the yard, but away. Bring them somewhere outside of the property for three hours. We went to the seminary and the mall on Friday, the local privately run forest / park on Saturday, and church on Sunday. This removes that dreaded extended time of entertainment that the great moms of the world fill with crafts, teaching and training and the slightly less great moms fill with a lot of "lighted box" time. Dads, don't be in a spot where your answer to what you did with the kids was "watched TV"!

2) Recognize needs vs wants. When the toddler falls down and busts her lip, she needs to be held. When she is bored of hitting the dog with a wooden sword, she does not. If you are doing a family critical job, like cooking dinner, you are not capable of simultaneously holding the toddler and cooking without burning someone or something. Moms can pull this off, we can't. A firm, "Daddy is busy cooking, we'll play later" is key here. She may whine for a minute, but she'll head over to the power tools for entertainment soon enough.

3) Physical activity reduces household stress. Tired kids go to sleep easier, and running around the forest like a madman guarantees this state.

4) Notre Dame football is an acceptable kiddie show.

5) It is always the oldest one's fault. This may not always be true, but it makes punishemnet decisions easy and makes the older one motivated to avoid fighting with the younger.

6) Punish early to avoid more of it later. We had a "naughty stick" incident Friday, and no further ones were required.

The Mrs. and I have been planning the direction of the blog, though we haven't had time for implementation. Now we will, as final exams are next week and I will only have school for one week out of the next ten. Some things we'll cover:

A) The first of an intermittent series on people in the military that made a lasting mark on me.

B) A series on church membership.

C) A post or short series on the doctrine of hell.

D) An exchange of posts regarding Hyper-Calvinism and my disagreement with it (Robert, are you up for it?)

E) A series addressing the Trinity, a lost doctrine in many of our "low churches", of which I am a member.

And whatever else may come from you all.

8 Comments:

  • D) An exchange of posts regarding Hyper-Calvinism and my disagreement with it (Robert, are you up for it?)

    Of course I am…but my theology isn’t exactly “Hyper-Calvinism”—I happen to think that Calvin was somewhat misguided in his (or rather, Augustine’s) view of free will. Regardless, I look forward to hearing you out.

    By Blogger Robert, at 11/22/2006 05:11:00 PM  

  • Hammer:

    Raising kids on ND football is acceptable...all three of my boys have been raised and at times babysat by the Blue and Gold...they are no worse for the wear (well, OK, there were a few problems with the kids during the Davie era, mostly a development of potty mouths, copying their father yelling at the TV).

    We just taught the trinity to 6th graders at PSR this past Sunday...tough to put it 'in a nutshell' for kids in a one hour class...it is a mystery, plain and simple, meant to be taken on faith and not able to be totally explained. We don't have enough 'mystery' and 'take it on faith' anymore, things are so scientific and can be proven / disproven scientifically nowdays.

    Have a blessed and wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.

    By Blogger John B., at 11/22/2006 08:51:00 PM  

  • Really glda to hear that things are sorting themselves out for you somewhat! Having time to spend with the children is one of the greatest blessings we have as parents, I think. And that advice is pretty good - for mothers as well as fathers. :-)

    pax et bonum

    By Blogger John, at 11/23/2006 06:34:00 AM  

  • Glad to see you back! I look forward to all of your post ideas.

    I hope the family had a blessed Thanksgiving.

    There are few daddies who will watch all of the kids for more than a few hours. Mr Rightthinker and you would have many angles to discuss...clever how you both mention 1) football, 2) power tools, 3) naughty sticks....

    By Blogger Rightthinker2, at 11/24/2006 10:55:00 AM  

  • There are few daddies who will watch all of the kids for more than a few hours.

    I only have one child myself, so I can't come close to comparing to the difficulty of dealing with three, but seriously, are there still daddies in the world who have issues with this? I thought they died out a few decades ago.

    Not that you did, but please, don't anyone call this baby-sitting. These children are the responsibility of both parents.

    By Blogger Mark, at 11/26/2006 05:04:00 AM  

  • Amateurs! I’ve been a single dad for almost five years now…I’ve got three kids.

    Seriously though, it’s not as easy as I once thought, but it’s very rewarding!

    By Blogger Robert, at 11/26/2006 09:29:00 PM  

  • Mark,

    Yes, they are the responsibility of both parents, but in some households, (others may view this antiquated, but we like it this way) mothers are still the primary caregivers. We don't have daycare, so there is no other caregiver but me. Dad, then, is not equally as responsible for most of the day because he is at work.

    This is natural in our home, and dad is 100% as good as mom at taking care of the kids...it simply makes MrRightthinker appreciate that I do my job very well, and we both realize how necessary our roles are, and how well they make things run. We wouldn't have had four children if it didn't flow well that way!

    By Blogger Rightthinker2, at 11/27/2006 12:25:00 AM  

  • Robert,
    It will be fun and informative, but it will be a bit in the future. I know you've been wanting to discuss some of those points we disagree on, so I want to make it its own post or more!

    John B,
    I agree about the mystery and faith. It's a consequence of the secular modernist worldview more than anything else - and even much of what many call "mystery" is really "I don't give it much thought". The Trinity deserves much thought, but in the end, is a mystery.

    RT,
    How funny that your husband thinks along the same lines! It's not that we don't love the time, it's the preference for the known - work and shared parenting.

    Mark,
    Babysitting? That's for teenagers. Dads parent, that's for sure - at least, they should. Shared responsibility doesn't mean shared duties, but there is nothing we are exempt from, that's for sure!

    By Blogger Hammertime, at 11/27/2006 11:30:00 PM  

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