Children

The potential possibilities of any child are the most intriguing and stimulating in all creation. -Ray L. Wilbur

My children are living poetry. They inspire me. They are a source of constant pleasure and reward. I can hardly say enough good things about parenting.

I have three children, Lionel, Rexana and Alexander. Lionel is in his thirties, and an absolute joy to be with. His conversation is stimulating, thoughtful, curious. He is full of enthusiasm and inquiry, and our dialog is deep and far-reaching.

Rexana is in her twenties. After graduating from UC Berkeley she was hired by Amazon, and she and her husband Tim moved to Austin, Texas. She’s both sweet and smart. We visit each other several times a year.

Alexander is in his late teens, heading toward a career. He’s thoughtful and observant. He loves family time with Lionel, Rexana, and members of our extended family.

Before the kids left home, we enjoyed each other and time together immensely. Most evenings we would make a gourmet meal together. We would play soothing classical music, set our gorgeous black marble dining table with elegant black plates, light candles, and sit at the table and share. One of their favorites was Awesome Dawson’s Gumbo; check out the recipe!

When my wife Christine and I moved in together in 2010, her two precious daughters came into my life. Jessie and Julia are close to the same age as Lionel and Rexana. I also became close to their husbands, Chase and Tyler. We all live within a 90 minute drive of each other.

Jessie and Chase have three children, Natalie, Keira and William. Christine and I often visit them, and love playing with our grandkids.

Dad and Kids

With Lionel, Rexana and Alexander, Christmas, 2007

Three-Kids-6_03

Lionel and Rexana with a happy baby Alex, June, 2003

Close observation of my children, and reading child rearing books, have taught me many nuggets of wisdom about children. Among them are:

1. Rigorously model EXACTLY the behavior you’d like to see from your children. Be consistent in your words and actions with how you’d like them to act.

2. Listen. Drop your body to their level, look them in the eye, and pay close attention to what they say.

3. Be absolutely clear in your communication, using words and concepts appropriate to their age level.

4. Be firm with your boundaries, rules and agreements. Set them, tell them to your kids, and stick with them.

5. Apologize when you’ve said or done something unkind or stupid.

6. Speak courteously and respectfully to all your family members at all times. Show them the respect you’d show your priest or minister, your doctor, or your teacher. Expect the same behavior from all family members toward each other.

Pretty much all the honest truth-telling there is in the world is done by children. -Oliver Wendell Holmes

Example is not the main thing in life-it is the only thing. -Albert Schweitzer

PumpkinKids

Hilarious Pumpkin Picking with Lionel and Angela, Halloween 2000

Baby-Driving

Alexander Loves Driving. July 2003